Oct. 30, 2012
HATTIESBURG, Miss. - Monday morning the Tulane Green Wave competed in the Conference USA championships hosted by SMU. The men's team finished their 8K race in eighth place out of eight teams, while the women took seventh place out of twelve teams in their 5K distance.
The women's finish was their highest in the Conference championships since 2007 where they placed sixth. As has been done all season, Paige Callahan took the team's number one spot with a 19th place finish out of 89 runners. Her 17:48.80 time marked a personal best for the young runner who is only a sophomore. Not only was it a personal record, but it was the first time Callahan had ever finished a 5K race under 18 minutes.
Senior Emmi Aguillard finished her last conference championship with a personal record as well. Her 18:21.30 time was the team's second fastest time and earned Aguillard 34th place overall. Fellow senior said her goodbyes to the conference as well finishing close behind Aguillard in 39th place and a time of 18:33.10, her fastest time of the season. Freshman Mikayla Sonneborn continued her steady improvement snatching 58th place and covering the 5K course in 19:17.40. Her time set a personal record for the freshman again, a trend she has been following week to week. After coming back from a devastating race in Alabama, junior Callie Turlington was able to cross the finish line in 66th place and a time of 19:33.20. And junior Aimee Arceneaux brought in 87th place finishing in 21:22.10.
"I'm very satisfied with the women's result," said Head Coach Eric Peterson after the meet. "We all felt that we were ready to step up and be a mid pack team. Sure enough today, by the results I feel like the team beat everybody that we should have beaten, and we lost to nobody that hadn't beaten us earlier. I was pleased and satisfied with the progress the team has made and the position we finished today."
The men finished with the same ranking as last year. But with a team made up of freshmen and sophomores, this meet was all about gaining experience.
"We don't like being at the back of the pack but we realize the inexperience the team," stated Peterson.
Following the yearlong trend, sophomore Mark Manion led the team on Monday with his 38th place time of 26:21.90 giving Manion a new personal best. Behind him was Geoff Zelek who finished in 52nd place out of 62 runners and notched another personal best time of 27:16.00. The team's three freshman Adam Yohanan, Jack White, Nicholas Meloro continued to have steady improvement and took 53rd, 59th, and 61st respectively. And although finishing last, senior Mike Villasin was able to run the fastest time of his career in 29:04.40.
"We talked about continued improvement," said Peterson. "Mark Manion ran a lifetime best, Zelek did, Villasin did. I was really pleased with the way they played today. They competed hard."
As for the rest of the season, there is none for the men who will not be competing in the NCAA South Central Regional on November 9. Instead, Manion will run as an individual. The women runners will compete in the meet that will be held in Fayetteville, Ark.
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
38/36 - Mark Manion - *26:21.90
52 /48 - Geoff Zelek - *27:16.00
53/49 - Adam Yohanan - 27:18.90
59/ 51 - Jack White - 28:17.80
61/52 - Nicholas Meloro - 28:45.20
62/53 - Mike Villasin - *29:04.40
Place/Adj. - Name - 5K Time
19/19 - Paige Callahan - *17:48.80
34/32 - Emmi Aguillard - *18:21.30
39/37 - Katherine Crabtree - 18:33.10
58 /55 - Mikayla Sonneborn - *19:17.40
66/61 - Callie Turlington - 19:33.20
87/78 - Aimee Arceneaux - 21:22.10