Saints Race to Runner-Up Finish at Great Lakes

posted Nov 10, 2014, 3:41 PM by Nicholas Whise

10/27/2014 – The women's cross country team placed second at the 7th annual NAIA Great Lakes Challenge meet contested at Gracewil Golf Course in Grand Rapids. The field of 41 schools featured eleven schools that were ranked or receiving votes in the latest NAIA Coaches poll. The Saints, who were ranked #11 in the latest ranking, were matched up against #4 Taylor, #12 St. Francis, #15 Shawnee State, #17 Olivet Nazarene and #19 Indiana Wesleyan, just to name a few.

The women, who finished with 131 points, were led by the quartet of Catie Rietsema, Molly Peregrine, Carley Woolcott and Crysta Paganelli. The foursome all crossed the finished line within :21 of each other. Rietsema (16th - 19:02) led the pack, followed by Peregrine (17th - 19:06), Woolcott (21st - 19:12) and Paganelli (31st - 19:23) to help lead to the upset of 4th ranked Taylor University. The second place finish was keyed by Aquinas' fifth runner, Adri Sigafoose. The freshman from McBain recorded an all-time personal best to place 46th in a time of 19:35 to secure the runner-up finish. After not factoring into any of the scoring in the Saints previous races, the middle-distance specialist stepped up at just the right moment for the Saints.

Top 10 Teams (out of 35 team finishers)

1. Shawnee State 122
2. Aquinas 131
3. Indiana Wesleyan 135
4. Taylor 136
5. St. Francis 185
6. Texas Wesleyan 207
7. Indiana Tech 219
8. Olivet Nazarene 222
9. Huntington 237
10. Cornerstone 238

The Saints will now prepare for the WHAC Championships in two weeks. The meet is hosted by Aquinas College and will be contested at Riverside Park.