Krista Parks leads women's cross-country to fourth-place finish at MAC Championships
The women’s cross-country team finished fourth in its 6-kilometer race at the Mid-American Conference Championships Saturday morning in Buffalo, N.Y.
Central Michigan out ran its projected placement, according to the regional poll, which predicted it to finish fifth.
The Chippewas haven't finished lower than fourth in the MAC since 2009.
“We’re proud, because six of our nine women were freshmen. The girls came out strong,” Randolph said. “We are a bit disappointed, because we didn’t perform as well, but those younger girls speak for a bright future.”
The top performer was junior Krista Parks. She led CMU by finishing sixth overall. She completed her race with a time of 21:52.1.
“I felt real good. We put it together today,” Parks said. “You could tell everyone is excited, and we did our best, and we are real proud of all our performances.”
Parks was the only one of her team to place high enough and earn first-team All-MAC honors.
Although Parks is thrilled with her finish and Randolph appreciates the hard work, Randolph would have liked a whole-team win.
“I know that they would trade those individual titles for their whole team being up on the podium,” Randolph said.
None of Parks’ teammates finished near her. Junior Shelby Thren finished 22nd in 22:19.4. Senior Maddie Ribant finished 31st in 22:29.1.
Following those finishes and rounding out the scoring line-up was freshman Kelly Schubert, who finished 34th in 22:32.2. Senior Veronica Garcia finished 35th in 22:33.0.
Redshirt freshman Alyssa Dyer finished 40th in 22.2, which concluded CMU's participants.
Despite not finishing the championship as well as the team would have liked, they are looking forward.
“Once we’re done with the race, we try to forget it and focus onto the next one,” Parks said. “There will be more people to run with (at regionals); we would like to place as high as possible. Eighth is our goal.”
Randolph said that he will not change his team’s preparation plans as the regional competition nears.
“We have a plan," Randolph said. "We will continue to have a good mindset and reach our goal."
The Chippewas will continue their season at the NCAA Great Lakes Regional Championships Nov. 9 at Madison, Wis.