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Women’s XC Runs Without JV at Tufts

By Deborah S. Won

The MIT women’s cross country team travelled to Tufts University’s home course in Grafton for the annual Codfish Bowl to compete against over 200 runners and got more of the fierce New England Division III competition they have been and will be up against this season. The team finished tenth out of 17 teams.

The team unfortunately had to leave some of their teammates behind due to the new MIT regulations restricting the competing squad to twelve members, but were still able to keep up their spirits and motivation.

Having seen the hills of the second and third miles during their walk-through of the course prior to the gun, the Tech runners planned on a conservative start. However, they did not anticipate a bottleneck where the path slightly narrowed in the beginning of the race. Nor did they anticipate winding up at the very back of the crowd of runners after these first 100 m.

The mighty Tech pack had to fight their way through the swarm of opponents, weaving their way in and out and running on sloped, uneven edges of the paths. And despite this slow first mile, they did work their way past opponent after opponent. None of the Tech runners let either the other runners or the bumpy, uneven, and hilly terrain from running tough, strong races.

Won finishes first for MIT

Having a Tufts opponent never far behind helped push Deborah S. Won ’00 to win the race in 18:35. Finishing second for the MIT harriers, Marissa L. Yates ’03 once again showed the amazing spirit and mental strength characteristic of this year’s freshmen and placed 33rd with a time of 20:31. Then the rest of the Tech pack came through with a delta of only 45 seconds between runners 3 through 7. Patricia M. McAndrew ’03, Crystal A. Russell ’03, Jantrue Ting ’00, Aimee R. Ginley ’03, and Margaret F. Nervegna ’01 finished in 21:26, 21:37, 21:39, 22:04, and 22:09, respectively. Molly Jones ’03, continuing to inspire teammates with her improvement, ran a 22:14, while her training partner and four-year veteran Leah Nichols ’00 followed close behind with a time of 23:38. Chi-An Wang ’01 and Farheen Qadir G showed they could push themselves without teammates nearby and finished with times of 24:35 and 27:31, respectively.

Most ran very even splits, but in hindsight would have opted for faster first miles to get better positioning. MIT placed 10th out of 17 scoring teams but will have the opportunity to take on some of those other top 10 teams again later in the season.