The Trine University women's cross country team finished as runners-up at the 2019 Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association Cross Country Championships that were held on Trine's campus in Angola, Ind. Junior Evie Bultemeyer (Fort Wayne, Ind./Homestead) finished as the individual MIAA Champion by finishing first and was named the conference "Most Valuable Runner."
As a team, the Thunder ended the event with a total of 49 points to place second of nine teams. It marked the highest team finish for the Thunder in the MIAA Championship. Hope (Mich.) College claimed the overall team championship with 32 points and Calvin (Mich.) College rounded out the top three teams at 54 points.
"I couldn't be more proud of our women's team today!" said Head Coach Zach Raber. "They ran totally fearless and went out and got it done."
Bultemeyer ran a time of 22:34.9 in the 6k race to take top individual honors and finished 45 seconds ahead of her nearest opponent. Two other runners placed in the top-10 in freshman Alli Smith (Temperance, Mich./Bedford Senior) and junior Elizabeth Lohman (Fort Wayne, Ind./Carroll). Smith ran a time of 23:39.2 and placed fifth overall, while Lohman completed the course in a time of 23:40.4 to place sixth.
Sophomore Chloe Brittain (Wheeler, Mich./Breckenridge) placed just outside the top-10 in 13th place after navigating the course in a time of 24:27.8. Freshman Amira Falukner (Bellbrook, Ohio/Bellbrook) crossed the finish line with the 24th fastest overall time of 25:04.9 to complete the team score eligible times.
Junior Stacy Dibley (Bristol, Ind./Elkhart Central) and freshman Sammi Silva (Oregon, Ohio/Clay) also competed for Trine and ran times of 26:09.2 and 27:18.9, respectively. Dibley's time put her in 49th place and Silva finished 67th to complete the top seven marks by the Thunder.
Following the meet, Bultemeyer's finish earned her first-tema All-MIAA honors in addition to being the MIAA "MVP." Joining her in earning first-team honors were Lohman and Smith. Brittain also earned All-Conference accolades as a second-team honoree.
"Evie was able to control the race early without pressing too hard," said Raber. "But, Alli Smith, Elizabeth Lohman and Chloe Brittain were absolutely outstanding today! We were second as a team and had four girls all conference, which is our best result in school history! Amira Faulkner also came up HUGE to solidify our second place team finish. All of our girls, top to bottom, ran an absolutely fantastic race today. I was very impressed by their performances."
Trine will next compete in the annual NCAA Division III Great Lakes Regional Meet on Saturday, Nov. 16. Trine will travel to Grand Rapids, Mich. and Calvin (Mich.) College to run in the event that is set to begin at 11 a.m.
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