Women's X-Country Ties for 2nd at InviteBy Lauren Klatsky
The women's cross country team tied for second place in the Rhode Island College Ray Dwyer Invitational meet on Saturday.
Among the field of 10 teams were Smith College and Mount Holyoke College, members of the Women's New England Eight Conference, in which MIT competes.
The winner of the meet was rival Wellesley College with a score of 53 points. MIT and the U.S. Coast Guard Academy each earned 65 points to tie for second place.
The race took place at Goddard State Park situated on Rhode Island's Atlantic coast. Rugged terrain, sandy horse trails, and small rolling hills challenged the runners on the toughest course the team has seen this season.
In addition to the slow running surface, the course was longer than the NCAA-approved 5 kilometers (about 3.1 miles), spanning 3.15 miles. Even though the extra distance added about 20 seconds to individual times, the team ran well.
Lauren Klatsky '97 overtook many runners in the latter portion of the race to win the race in a time of 20:02. Despite twisting her ankle with about a half mile left in the course, Janis Eisenberg '98 finished in 20:09 to clinch second place.
MIT's third runner, Shue-Fen Tung '00 also endured similar battle wounds. She was tripped at the beginning of the race but got up to finish it with a time of 20:27 in sixth place.
Debbie Won '00, also frustrated by the start, was the 23rd runner to cross the finish in a time of 21:18. MIT's final scorer, Tanya Zelevinski '99, earned 43rd place with a time of 22:02. Leah Nichols '00 and Robin Evans '99 were close behind, taking 49th and 59th places in 22:15 and 22:31, respectively.
In spite of various obstacles, the Eisenberg-Klatsky duo pulled through once again. Coach Joe Sousa said that Klatsky's recovery from her position at the first mile made her performance even more remarkable.
The team's difficult hill workouts have paid off. Many of the women reported that they felt good as they attacked the hills and passed many opponents on the inclines.
The Engineers will encounter more hills this week as they compete in the Wellesley College Invitational on Friday.