MADISON, Conn. (November 2, 2013) -- The Rutgers women’s cross country team raced to a fifth place finish at the inaugural American Athletic Conference Cross Country championships on Saturday at Hammonasset Beach State Park. The Scarlet Knights had a trio of top 30 finishes on the 6K course led by sophomore Paige Senatore (Delsea, N.J.) in 17th with a time of 21:33.53.
Senior Rashmi Singh (Flemington, N.J.) and junior Allison Payenski (Whitehouse Station, N.J.) finished back-to-back in 28th and 29th respectively. Singh clocked in at 22:14.16 followed by Payenski in a time of 22:18.48.
Other scoring members of the Scarlet Knights included freshman Kaitlyn Bedard (Ringoes, N.J.) in 36th place, crossing the finish line in a time of 22:38.70, and junior Felicia O’Donnell (Franklinville, N.J.) taking 40th with a time of 22:57.77.
Also racing for RU on Saturday were freshman Nisa Cicitta (Glen Gardner, N.J.) in 41st with a time of 23:03.40, freshman Maria Calazans (Watchung, N.J.) in 57th in a time of 24:07.75 and freshman Ellen Miller (Morris Plains, N.J.) taking 75th in 27:48.28.
SMU captured the 2013 American title followed by Louisville in second place and Connecticut in third.
"Our team goal was to be top five and the ladies met our expectations,” said assistant coach Jan Merrill-Morin. “They've been training very hard all year and it's great to see their commitment pay-off with everyone running personal bests for 6K."
"Coach Jan and I are very happy with our team finish,” added head coach James Robinson. “The ladies have performed very well during the championship season thus far. We look to continue our strong performances at the NCAA Regionals in two weeks."
The Rutgers women’s cross country team returns to action on Friday, Nov. 15 at the District II Championships in Bethlehem, Pa.
2013 American Athletic Conference Women’s Cross Country Championships Results
1. SMU - 29
2. Louisville - 61
3. Connecticut - 79
4. UCF - 142
5. Rutgers - 150
6. USF - 165
7. Memphis - 173
8. Temple - 203
9. Houston - 225
10. Cincinnati - 231
17. Paige Senatore - 21:33.53
28. Rashmi Singh - 22:14.16
29. Allison Payenski - 22:18.48
36. Kaitlyn Bedard - 22:38.70
40. Felicia O'Donnell - 22:57.77
41. Nisa Cicitta - 23:03.40
57. Maria Calazans - 24:07.75
75. Ellen Miller - 27:48.28
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