Categorized | Sports

Cross country team successful at Conference Championships

Anna Hartig
Staff Writer

Wooster’s Cross Country team is returning to campus after a successful performance at the 2017 North Coast Athletic Conference Championships [NCAC] this past weekend at Oberlin College in Oberlin, Oh.

Three runners received Honorable Mention All-Conference, and the men’s team placed fourth overall while the women’s team placed seventh. Jackson Feinknopf ’19 led the trio of All-Conference performers with a time of 26:09.1 in the 8,000 meters, a career best.

Feinknopf remarked, “The performance this weekend was extremely rewarding for the men’s team as it was the highest placement we have gotten at conference since 2013 and our top three runners all came in the top 21 and were given All-Conference honors.”

All three conference honorees were juniors as David Westcott ’19 and Brian Lief ’19 had impressive performances this past weekend along with Feinknopf.

Westcott was absent for nearly the entire 2016 cross country season but made a successful comeback in the championship this past weekend with a time of 26:22.9, placing in 18th place. Lief followed just behind in 20th place with a time of 26:26.2.

All five Wooster runners were able to place in the top 35 as Geoffery Carney-Knisely ’18 and Aedan Pettit ’20 finished the race as 32nd and 33rd.

Pettit felt good about the team’s achievement at the tournament and said, “I love running for Wooster because the team works really great together. We’re all really close friends and the atmosphere around the team is always positive.”

On the women’s side, the Fighting Scots were able to show off their talent in the 6,000 meters. Zoe Covey ’21 competed in her first league meet with a time of 23:51.3, earning her career best. This time earned her 36th place finish in the tournament as her teammate Mackenzie Kellar ’18 finished in 50th place with a time of 24:25.2. Emma Busch ’21 along with Cobi Warstler ’20, Ashley Ferguson ’18, Audrey Cordova ’20 and Reaghan Beaver ’21 all rounded out the top seven Scots in the race.

Both the women’s and men’s teams have created a very impactful season through their team atmosphere.

“Our coach [Coach Dennis Rice] has played a large part in making the entire team buy into the team concept and has placed a large emphasis on putting in high mileage and finishing tough workouts as a team,” said Feinknopf.

He also reinforced the great team environment. “I enjoy the family aspect of running for Wooster and all the opportunities it has given me; all the guys and girls on the team I consider my closest friends and family,” he said.

After such success in the NCAC tournament, the Scots are looking to bring this confidence into their next meet and continue to surpass expectations that are set for the team.

Pettit said, “We started this season without four of our top seven runners from last year, so expectations were pretty low but we’ve worked really hard to achieve more than others expected us to.” The team continues to break expectations and hopes to bring strong performances for upcoming regionals.

Tomorrow on Nov. 4, the cross country team is hosting their Twilight 5k Invitational at home. The race will take place at 7 p.m. at John P. Papp Stadium. The team is looking for lots of support as they will be working to achieve fast times and personal records leading up to their regional championships on Nov. 11.

The team will head to Ohio Wesleyan University to face their rival competitors the following week. Make sure to watch your Fighting Scots participate in their twilight race as there will be music and food available.

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