SEC Cross Country Roundup
Two SEC cross country teams were in action last weekend: Alabama at the Montevallo Falcon Classic and Mississippi State at the UNA Invitational. Recaps of those meets are below.
The Alabama women's cross country team claimed second at the Montevallo Falcon Classic, highlighted by senior Alexa Cruz's fifth-place finish in the women's 5K on Saturday. Leading the way for the Crimson Tide's runner-up finish, senior Alexa Cruz recorded a 5K time of 18:32.43 to place fifth overall while also shaving off over 40 seconds from her season-best. Six of her teammates also improved their times from last weekend's showing at the Brooks Memphis Twilight Classic. Five other Alabama runners finished inside the top-25 to secure the Crimson Tide's second-place finish. Seniors Hannah Howard, (22nd, 19:53.24) and Shannon Marsh, (18th, 19:37.96), along with sophomores Lauren Brackin (13th, 19:05.18), Leahrose Mami (21st, 19:52.14) and Riley Schelp (11th 18:57.19). Making her first appearance in Crimson, sophomore Sydney Milani rounds out the women's lineup (49th, 21:30.55). Earlier in the morning, in the men's 8K, all three Alabama men finished inside the top-45. Junior Paul Selden ran the best time among the Crimson Tide men, completing the race in 26:21.10 to finish in 34th. Junior Scott Platek finished 44th (26:47.03), while freshman Alex Mielke rounded out the men's showing (45th, 26:51.29).
The Mississippi State women's cross country team claimed the UNA Invitational title, highlighted by Sydney Steely's second-place finish on Saturday morning. Steely ran a personal-best time of 18:17.6 in the 5K, shattering her previous mark by 30 seconds. Also setting a personal-best was Ava Weems, who crossed the line fourth at 18:32.3. Five freshmen made their collegiate debuts, led by Mary Beth Woodward, Kate Zacharias and Breja Hooks who all finished under 20 minutes. Woodward finished in the top 10, while Zacharias and Hooks placed 14th and 18th, respectively. All seven Bulldogs who competed earned top-50 finishes, rounded out by Savannah Schwab and Nicole Franklin at 29th and 49th.