Women’s Cross Country Team Sees Intense Training Pay Off, Takes Second at Illinois Invitational

Freshman Jessie Kuykendall runs in the Illinois Invitational on Oct. 17 PHOTO COURTESY OF WESTMINSTER ATHLETICS.

Freshman Jessie Kuykendall runs in the Illinois Invitational on Oct. 17 PHOTO COURTESY OF WESTMINSTER ATHLETICS.

BY BEN CAMPBELL

SPORTS EDITOR

The Westminster women’s cross country team took second place out of 10 teams competing at the Illinois Invitational on Oct. 17.


Sophomore Taylor Howard finished with a time of 24:32.49, coming in 6th overall out of 67 runners and leading all Lady Blue Jay runners. Senior Brier Skogsberg finished 8th overall with a time of 24:38.96, and first-year Jessie Kuykendall was the third top 10 runner for Westminster, finishing 10th with a time of 24:54.12. The Blue Jays finished with just 69 points, second only to Maryville (59).

The Lady Jays have found success this season largely because of their work ethic.

“We had two-a-days early in the season to build up our endurance, and now we do either long runs or sprints during the week,” Howard said. “They’re physically and mentally challenging, but it’s nice to see the results pay off.”

Senior Claire Gibby also noted the importance of hard training.

“In order to have a successful season, we need to start training in May,” she said. “It is important to have a good base to build off of once the season starts. Coach Marshall is also a huge advocate for pack running (running with a teammate), and that really helps us push ourselves to achieve our goals.”

The next race for the Lady Jays will be on Oct. 31 at Greenville College, when they compete for a conference championship in the SLIAC Invitational.

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