South Bend, Ind. – Behind two top-10 individual finishers for the Saint Xavier University women's cross country team, the Cougars finished in third place out of 11 teams at the Bethel Cross Country Invitational in South Bend, Ind., on Friday, October 12. Senior Ashley Shares (Palos Park, Ill./Moraine Valley CC/Stagg) took first place and set a new course record in the 5K (5,000 meters) race with a personal-best time of 18:21.5. Shares beat her previous personal-best time by 10 seconds and also beat some top competitors on nationally ranked teams en route to her first-place finish, including No. 14 ranked Aquinas College. Aquinas came in first place in the team standings with Indiana Wesleyan University, Saint Xavier University, Indiana Institute of Technology and Bethel College coming in second, third, fourth and fifth place, respectively.
Junior Jordan Wallace (Frankfort, Ill./Lincoln-Way North) came in seventh place with a time of 18:53.9. Freshman Dana Martin (Chicago, Ill./Marist) and sophomore Leslie Rosario (Fort Myers, Fla./Neosho County CC/North Fort Myers) finished in third and fourth place for SXU, which was good for 14th and 20th place respectively, overall in the race with times of 19:18.6 and 19:32.3. Freshman Ann Kolker (Naperville, Ill./St. Francis H.S.) rounded out the top five for the Cougars with a time of 19:50.3 good for 30th place overall.
"I am really proud of Ashley setting the new course record at the Bethel Invite," said women's cross country coach Lisa Ebel. "This past race was also a best team time by over a minute and a half. I am really excited for the race in Grand Rapids, Mich., this weekend; because it will have great NAIA competition and our team should perform really well."
Saint Xavier completes its regular season slate with the NAIA Great Lakes Invite at Riverside Park in Grand Rapids, Mich., on Saturday, October 20. The women's race is scheduled for a noon (eastern) start.