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Emily MacLeod and Michigan State Win the 2010 NCAA Great Lakes Regional Cross-Country Championships
For the Michigan State women’s cross country team, it’s time to win. Trust me, the Spartans have made that decision pretty clear lately.
After winning the Big Ten Conference title, Michigan State’s women displayed the same great talent and defense as they raced to victory again with individual and team titles at the 2010 NCAA Great Lakes Regional Championship Meet.
Senior Emily McLeod once again led the Spartans by winning the 6-kilometer run in 20:18.76, successfully defending her first individual title in last year’s race.
McLeod was followed by junior Carly Green (sixth in 20:41.98), junior Rebecca Smeltzer (11th in 20:53.17), sophomore Kristen Smith (30th in 21:32.19) and freshman Julia Otwell (32nd in 21:38.27). Their overall average time was 21:00.88, just a hair under 21.
The Spartans were the only team to place 3 runners in the top 15: McLeod (1st), Green (6th) and Smeltzer (11th).
Michigan State’s winning score of 80 was 16 points better than archrival Michigan’s 96, and the Wolverines had to settle for second place again (they finished runner-up to Michigan State in the Big Ten Conference Championship).
The next 8 teams were Toledo (3 for 130), Ohio State (4 for 139), Indiana (5 for 167), Notre Dame (6 for 207), Miami-Ohio (7 for 220) and Central Michigan (8). 232), Dayton (9th by 248) and Wisconsin (10th by 266).
33 teams and 231 runners participated in the 3.72 mile course at the Great Lakes Regional at Oakland (MI) University.
Spartan sophomore Katie Haynes was 74th and freshman Sarah Kroll 88th.
McLeod ran a strong and smart race. “I was trying to stay really cool and calm,” McLeod said, “and I knew the Toledo girl was going to go fast. I just backed off, stuck to my strategy and it all worked out.”
“Emily came out today after knowing the strategy of many of the other runners,” said Michigan State cross country director Walt Drent.
“She stayed poised throughout the race. Before the race we talked about lowering her mental and physical efforts in preparation for the NCAA Championships,” Drent continued.
“After a few races, (she) caught the leaders with about 400 meters to go and then went on to win the race. When you’re competing as the defending champion, you really have a lot. People looking to make a run at you. She handled the expectations well, which is how she is and Michigan. It also showed that the type of state is the team.It is about the team, not the individual.
By winning, Michigan State automatically qualified for the 2010 NCAA Championship Meet. By winning the individual title, Emily McLeod became the first Spartan to win back-to-back championships. Her win was Michigan State’s third straight since Nicole Bush won the individual title in 2008 in 20:48.5 seconds.
Michigan State won the Great Lakes titles in 2006 and 2007. Last year, the Spartan women finished fifth in the team competition.
Emily McLeod was later named the 2010 Great Lakes Region Female Athlete of the Year and Director Walt Drenth was named the Great Lakes Women’s Coach of the Year for the second year.
Wisconsin’s men dominated this year’s Great Lakes Regional meet again, going 2-6-7-8-9 for a dream win with 32 points, compared to runner-up Indiana’s 76 points.
This time the Badgers were led by sophomore Reed Conner (2nd in 30:28.70), sophomore Maverick Darling (6th in 30:31.61), junior Elliot Krause (7th in 30:31.79) and sophomore Muhammad Ahmed (31.85). 31). , senior Landon Peacock (9th in 30:32.02). Their average winning time over the 10 km (6.2 mi) course was 30:31.20.
Do you think Wisconsin has a chance to repeat next year? Are you serious dude? They seem to have a lock on the men’s competition for years to come.
Junior Phil Thomas, Wisconsin’s sixth finisher, finished 23rd in 30:51.93. If you think that’s not fast enough, consider this thought: His time would have ranked 3rd in scoring among 28 of the 31 teams in the competition.
Message: Don’t mess with male badgers when they run or meander aimlessly – you’ll be watching their backsides throughout the run.
Eric Finan of Cincinnati won the individual title in 30:25.34, averaging 4:53.8 per mile.
Michigan State’s men were fifth, with senior Patrick Grosskopf finishing 13th in 30:39.06. He earned all-region honors for the second year in a row and qualified for the NCAA finals as an individual.
Copyright © 2010 Ed Bagley
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