Chapman Wins Individual Title at Fordham Invitational

(photo by Don Clark, Yale Sports Publicity)

Yale Places Second of 17 Teams

BRONX, N.Y. – The Bulldog women's cross country team laced up its racing flats for the first time this season on Saturday, where they faced off against 16 other squads. Sophomore Melissa Chapman won the race in a blistering 18:03.63, leading her team to second place overall. The team was only nine points behind Princeton, a nationally-ranked squad and the defending Ivy champions. The third-place team, Penn, had more than double Yale's 43 points. The Bulldogs posted an impressive showing at their first meet, and showed that they can be competitive within the Ivy League.

Throughout the race, the team stuck together, working with each other to move up in position. Junior Jacque Sahlberg crossed the line in third place overall, just seven seconds after Chapman. Freshman Kira Garry was next in tenth place (18:32.00), followed by the junior tandem of Elizabeth Marvin (17th- 18:47.10) and Caitlin Hudson (18th- 18:47.86). Junior Jennifer Donnelly (40th- 19:28.87) and sophomore Sarah Barry (62nd- 19:59.11) rounded out the Bulldogs' top seven.

Senior Madeline Adams (74th- 20:08.67), freshman Hannah Alpert (20:13.06), freshman Alyssa Laguardia (90th- 20:25.29) and senior Kristin Johnson (93rd- 20:31.98) also competed for the Bulldogs. Overall, 217 athletes competed. 

Head coach Amy Gosztyla commented on the team's ability to keep each other's blue jerseys in sight: "The women ran very controlled for the first half of the race working together, and picked up a number of spots throughout the second half of the race."

The women look to be in an exciting position to succeed this fall. They proved that they can compete against powerhouse teams such as Princeton and Penn, and that they can keep in contact with each other, which is an important aspect of cross country races.

"We are in a great starting spot for the season and I'm very pleased with the women's perfomance," said Gosztyla. "It's going to be an exciting fall."

The team will hope to maintain its momentum going into next weekend's race against Harvard. The meet in Boston will start at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, Sep. 17.

Report by Natalie Villa '13, Yale Sports Publicity