Saturday, September 18, 2010

Richmond Spider Women Take First in Wolfpack XC Invitational

Nicol Traynor led Richmond to victory over NC State.

The Spiders take 2, 3, 4 to win 27-33…with a 5K team average of 17:43.1

The Richmond women following the victory
in the 2010 NC State Wolfpack Cross Country
Invitational in Raleigh, NC on September 17.

Before their warm-up the team attached
their race numbers to their uniforms...
Dana Guglielmo before the race...
She was instrumental in the Spiders victory
leading the team late into the race...
The warm-up begins...
On the start line...
...and they are off.

At the 1.3 mile mark the Spiders
held 5 of the top 9 places
including the top 3 in the race...
KC Rismiller, UR SID

Women's Results

CARY, N.C. - The Richmond women's cross country team captured first-place at the Wolfpack Invitational on a sweltering Friday evening in Cary, N.C. Senior Nicol Traynor came in second-place, assisting the Spiders in a first-place finish over host NC State.

Weather became a major factor when temperatures reached 91 degrees at race time, but that did not hold the Spiders back from taking four of the top-ten spots at the Wolfpack Invitational. Traynor finished the 5K race in 17:30.3, followed by senior Amy Van Alstine in third (17:31.6), sophomore Dana Guglielmo in fourth (17:33.2) and senior Julie Rechel finished eighth (17:48.8).

Of the top four Richmond runners, all have qualified for the NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships throughout their careers. Nicol Traynor currently holds the University of Richmond 5,000 meter run (16:17.64) and the 3,000 meter steeplechase (10:28.46) records. Traynor also competed in the 5,000 meter race at the 2009 NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Championships. A year later, at the 2010 NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Championships, Amy Van Alstine ran in the first round of the 5,000 meter race, Dana Guglielmo competed in the first round of the 3,000 meter steeplechase, and Julie Rechel ran in the first round of the 10,000 meter run.

In Richmond's first appearance at the Wolfpack Invitational, the Spider's made a lasting impact. Not only did the team clinch first-place, but Traynor, Van Alstine, and Guglielmo's individual times ranked among the fastest ever run on the WakeMed Park Cross Country Course.

"I'm pleased with much of what we did here this evening. We controlled the race early with our front 5 runners working together and leading through the mile...We had some good performances and some that we know can run better... Our 1-5 split was 41 seconds and that is something we will work on. The girls are keeping perspective and systematically doing what is necessary."

Overall, the Spiders defeated the Wolfpack, 27-33. Prior to Friday's meet, NC State was ranked fourth in the NCAA Southeast Region and Richmond was ranked 11th.

"The win over NC State is nice. They have a lot of history within their program and they are well coached. We respect that history but our women do not fear it, there's a big difference. We look at these races as opportunities. We are building our program every year and it takes athletes that believe and athletes that can objectively see what we offer at the University of Richmond."

Also for Richmond, freshman Jill Prentice finished 11th (18:11.7), followed by senior Jennifer Ennis in 16th (18:35.9). Senior Erin Lunny was 18th (18:42.1) and junior Beth Kelly was 20th (18:46.1) to account for the Spiders in the top 20.

NC State's Laura Hoer (17:00.8) won the women's race, helping the Wolfpack to a second-place finish. East Carolina University came in third (68), while Virginia Wesleyan finished fourth (144) and Winston-Salem State rounding out the top five (166).

"Right now the key is that we are healthy and that showed today. That was not the case last year. We changed some things around and have seen positive results from those changes. We continue to move forward and that's the most important thing at this point in the season."

The Spider women will re-join the men in two weeks to compete at the Paul Short Invitational in Lehigh, Pa. on Oct. 1.

For more in-depth coverage on the race and the women's Wolfpack experience, visit Coach Taylor's blog, or follow him on Twitter.

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