The Slippery Rock University women’s cross-country team took fifth place in the team standings and had two athletes earn All-Conference honors at the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference Championships on Saturday.
The team improved on its sixth place finish in the championships from last year. The championships were held at Mansfield University’s Lamb’s Creek Course. Seventeen schools competed at the event where Edinboro University took the team title, scoring 52 points. Bloomsburg University took second place with 71 team points. In third place was Shippensburg University with 127 points. Lock Haven University scored 187 points, good for fourth place. SRU took fifth place with 192 points, edging out East Stroudsburg University by just one point. SRU head coach John Papa thinks that his team ran well and that he likes where they ended in the standings.
“We knew that it would be close between Lock Haven, us, and East Stroudsburg, so we’re happy finishing in fifth,” Papa said.
SRU junior Jenny Picot and Senior Janine Powis earned their places on the All-PSAC team with their performances on Saturday. Picot secured a spot on the first team All-PSAC squad and Powis placed with the second team group. This was Picot’s first time earning this honor, while Powis has now made the team two years in a row.
Picot and Powis were consistently the best runners for the Rock this season, often times being the top two scorers for SRU. Picot was having a strong year before she had to sit out the last meet of the season, but when she ran she was always the Rock’s top runner.
Picot also finished in the top five overall in all three races that she ran, with finishes in second, third, and fifth place.
Powis also had a successful season, with two top 10 finishes, both times in ninth place, a top 15 finish in 13 place, and one finish in 20 place. Papa thought that his two top runners really showed up for the team on Saturday.
“We’re really proud of the way Jenny and Janine ran at the championships,” Papa said. “When she runs, Jenny is easily our number one and she will always be near the head of the pack, and Janine is never too far behind.”
Picot came in 10 place with a time of 22:05 and Powis finished in 19 with a time of 22:29. Taking the top overall spot was Bloomsburg’s Lauren Lehman with a time of 21:17.
The other three scorers for the Green and White were freshman Kaylee Haberkam, junior Brittany Fagan, and senior Angelica Bagwell.
Haberkam finished in 54 place in 23:28, Fagan came in 56 place with a time of 23:34, and Bagwell finished in 58 place in 23:39. Other top Green and White runners were junior Jessica Bennett in 67place with a time of 23:58 and freshman Rebekah Zee in 73 place in 24:04.
A total of 153 runners finished the race, with nine of them from the Rock. Picot thinks her teammates ran well and believes they can do just as well at regionals.
“I like that we had three people in a pack, that doesn’t always happen,” Picot said. “They were all working together which is awesome. I think everyone did well, but I still think everyone has a little more in them for regionals. Since this is our home course hopefully it will give us an advantage, because we practice on it all the time.”
The Rock will be looking for a top three finish in two weeks’ time at the Atlantic Region Championship, which will be held at the Cooper’s Lake Campground. The top three teams from the region championship will earn a berth in the NCAA National Championship meet.