Whit Runners Win Men's & Women's Races
News Release Date:
Saturday, October 15
WALLA WALLA, Wash. -- It was a Red Letter Day for the Whitman College cross country teams as they ran to a pair of first-place performances at Saturday's Boxer Rebellion at the Sunset Grove Golf Course in Forest Grove, Ore.
The Missionary women's team won the 6,000 meters with 40 place points for its top five runners, beating runner-up Lewis & Clark by seven points and Puget Sound by 14.
Pacific, the host school, was fourth in the women's race with 106 points. George Fox followed with 108.
In the men's 8,000 meters, Whitman and Lewis & Clark tied for the top spot with 46 points. Trailing were Pacific 55, Puget Sound 83, and George Fox 117.
"We've had some good teams in recent years, but this might be the first time since 1995 that we've had both teams finish first at the same event," Whitman coach Scott Shields said.
"So, this was an awesome day for Whitman."
Whitman runners finished second individually in both races.
After setting the pace for most of the men's race, freshman Colin Domonoske was unable to hold off Lewis & Clark junior Sam Smith at the end. Smith took the checkered flag in 26:42.60 while Domonoske was second in 26:46.10.
Junior Emilie Gilbert was second in the women's race in 23:25.10. Lewis & Clark's Emily Thomas, also a junior, was first in 22:59.50.
Both Gilbert and Domonoske ran well, Shields said.
"The Lewis & Clark women's team has some fast runners, so this was a good chance for Emilie to test herself," he said. "She ran well and can use this as a measuring stick as she gets ready for the conference championships.
"Emilie also did a good job of holding off a George Fox runner who stayed close the whole way."
Domonoske ran the best race of his young career, Shields said. "Colin started fast, ran hard the whole way and was able to maintain it.
"Two veteran runners from Lewis & Clark and Pacific stayed on his heels for most of the race and used that to their advantage. They both made their move at the end, and Colin was able to hold off one of them to finish second."
Both Whitman teams remain on track to have their best races at the NWC Championships (Oct. 29) and NCAA Division III West Regional (Nov. 12), Shields said.
"We're going to get stronger but it was great fun watching both of our teams today," he said. "Our runners do a great job of competing as a team and pushing each other when they are on the course."
First-year runner Caitlin Iglehart ran second for the Whitman women, placing fifth overall in 23:40.20. Junior Katri Gilbert was a step behind in sixth place with a time of 23:43.70.
Sophomore Skye Pauly (11th, 24:07.50) and first-year teammate Erin Campbell (16th, 24:24.50) completed Whitman's team score.
Senior Mollee Huisinga, who has filled Whitman's fifth spot for much of the season, missed the race to stay on campus for academic testing. Two seniors on the fringe of the top five, Jennifer Farley and Kelly Jensen, also missed the race for the same reason.
Lewis & Clark, ranked No. 18 nationally in the latest coaches poll, was missing three of its top runners, one because of an academic conflict and two because of injury.
Whitman was No. 26 in the latest national poll.
"Lewis & Clark is a very good team, and I'm sure voters in next week's poll will take into consideration that they were missing three of their top runners," Shields said.
"The fact that we beat Lewis & Clark today is going to help us more in the national poll than it's going to hurt Lewis & Clark."
Lewis & Clark was second and Whitman third in the most recent West Region poll.
The women's race attracted a total of 67 runners with Whitman filling 20 of those slots.
Filling Whitman's second five were junior Shannon McCarty (21st, 24:47.40), junior Lori Mendelsohn (23rd, 24:49.70), sophomore Ellen Banks (25th, 24:57.00), first-year runner Chelan Pauly (28th, 25:08.60), and sophomore Alyssa Goard (31st, 25:15.40).
Running second and third for the Whitman men were junior Oliver Wood, who was sixth in 27:02.80, and sophomore Michael Jorgensen, who was ninth in 27:26.40.
Completing the team score were junior Cory Rand, who was 12th in 27:32.70, and sophomore Taylor Mesojednik, who finished 17th in 27:53.20.
Senior Brendan Boyer, who ran fifth for Whitman at its last race, missed Saturday's event. He stayed on campus for academic testing.
"A few of the strongest men's team in the conference were not at this meet, but this is still a great result for our men's team," Shields said. "They've been working very hard."
Whitman's second five on Saturday included first-year runners T.C. Heydon and Joe Mayo, who placed 19th and 20th, respectively, with times of 27:58.80 and 28:05.60.
Rounding out that group were freshman Carl Garrett (24th, 28:29.40), freshman Alex Porter (28:47.00), and sophomore Spencer Corwin (28:57.10).
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CONTACT: Dave Holden
Sports Information Director
Whitman College, Walla Walla, Wash.
509 527-5902; firstname.lastname@example.org