Oct. 13, 2012
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. - With a tragic twist and a freshman filled team, Tulane did not live up to the stunning success they've had all season Saturday morning at the Crimson Classic.
Junior Callie Turlington was taken out off the course due to overwhelming heat exhaustion and the women's team did not have the minimum amount of players to place in results. On other hand, the men finished their 8K race 12th out of 13 teams.
"You step up in class, and it requires more from team. We need to be better prepared," said Head Coach Eric Peterson.
With 200 meters left in the race, Turlington dropped to her knees in obvious exhaustion. She began crawling to the finish line, but her health was determined to be in danger and she was taken out of the meet.
"It was unfortunate," Peterson said. "The other women ran pretty well."
Sophomore Paige Callahan remained as Tulane's pace setter with her time of 18:12.82, placing 17th out of the 135 runners who competed. Her time was the fastest 5K distance for the young runner all season. Seniors Katherine Crabtree and Emmi Aguillard came next finishing 52nd and 60th with times of 19:02.66 and 19.14.06, respectively. For both veterans, their performances earned them season bests as well. Another bright spot of the day came from freshman Mikayla Sonneborn, whose 81st place time of 19:44.71 was a personal best.
"Paige [Callahan] ran faster on this course than she did last year," said Peterson. "We expected that from her. Mikayla Sonneborn had a career best. There were pieces that improved today, but [Turlington] needed to stay healthy. My guess is they would have placed in the Top 10, but I don't know where Turlington was in the race."
Sophomore Mark Manion was the team's leader again, but placed just shy of the Top 50 in 52nd place out of 111 runners and recording a time of 27:09.35. Sophomore Geoff Zelek was the team's second fastest Green Wave runner with his 87th place time of 28:24.47. Freshman Jack White and Adam Yohanan finished in 90th and 93rd place with their times of 28:33.06 and 28:55.35. Freshman Nicholas Meloro also placed in the Top 100 with his time of 28:58.12. Senior Michael Villasin closed out the squad with a 102nd place finish and a time of 29:43.48.
"Mark Manion ran well today at the front of our team," Peterson said. "He continues to provide leadership right now. I felt like the rest of the team was a bit overwhelmed by the step up in class. It's unfortunate, but not entirely unexpected. The guys need more experience, and they need to run with more confidence and focus. We'll get there. We're just young and inexperienced. These are the meets we need to gain experience."
Overall, the team finished better than last year at the Crimson Classic, where the men's team finished 13th and the women's team, 14th. This meet was the last regular season competition for the Green Wave.
Tulane will compete next at the Conference-USA Championships in Hattiesburg, Miss. on October 27. "A lot of work is already done," said Peterson. "It's a matter of getting rested and staying sharp."
You can follow the Green Wave cross country/track and field program on Twitter (@GreenWaveTkFld) or on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/TulaneXCTF.
Place/Adj. - Name - 8K Time
52/43 - Mark Manion - 27:09.35
87/67 - Geoff Zelek- 28:24.47
90/69 - Jack White - 28:33.06
93/72 - Adam Yohanan- 28:55.35
95/73 - Nicholas Meloro- 28:58.12
102/76 - Mike Villasin - 29:43.48
Place/Adj. - Name - 5K Time
17/-- - Paige Callahan - 18:12.82
52/-- - Katherine Crabtree - 19:02.96
60/-- - Emmi Aguillard - 19:14.06
81/-- - Mikayla Sonneborn - 19:44.71