CLINTON, Miss. – Spring Hill College women's cross country team placed 5th out of 12 teams at the Southern States Athletic Conference (SSAC) Championships hosted by Belhaven University at Choctaw Trails on Saturday morning.
As a team, the Badgers ran a total team time of 1:46:27.79 over the 5-kilometer course for a total of 150 points and a team average time of 21:17.56.
Individually, senior Kate Imwalle from Mobile's McGill-Toolen Catholic High School placed 4th of 83 runners in a time of 18:52.14 while qualifying for her fourth consecutive trip to the NAIA National Championships. Imwalle is now the only runner in SHC cross country history to qualify for the national event in all four years of eligibility.
By turning in the 4th best time 5k time in school history on Saturday, Imwalle now holds the top five times in the Badger record books and eight of the top 10 times.
Sophomore Emily Dolan (left), also a McGill-Toolen graduate, finished in 16th place with a time of 20:14.59 and successfully qualified for the NAIA Championships by the razor thin margin of .03 of a second.
Junior Payton Tanner of Fairhope, Ala., finished in 18th position at 20:28.76 while senior Emily Stewart of Mt. Juliet, Tenn., was 58th at 23:19.48 and senior Meghan Kacic of Tampa, Fla., ran in 61st position at 23:32.82 to close out the scoring for the Badgers
The 6th and 7th Badgers to cross the line were sophomore Anna DeWine of Cedarville, Ohio, who placed 66th at 23:53.72 and sophomore Claire Stewart of Mt. Juliet, was 68th at 24:02.87.
Senior Ashley Derenbecker from Bay St. Louis, Miss., was 74th in a time of 25:22.06 to round out the Badger runners.
Imwalle and Dolan will next represent Spring Hill College at the NAIA Women's Cross Country National Championships held in Vancouver, Wash., on Saturday, November 19, at 11:45 a.m. P.S.T.