Charleston Southern and VMI Finish Well on Saturday

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Hagos Leads VMI to Win at Furman
GREENVILLE, S.C. - The VMI men's cross country team, led by Noah Hagos' second straight individual title, captured the team championship at the Gene Mullin Furman Invitational, held Saturday in Greenville, S.C.
 
Hagos followed up his Sept. 10 W&L Invitational win with a victory Saturday, clocking in at 25:59 on the 8K course. The effort was just 12 seconds off the course record, and was 27 seconds better than the day's second place finisher. Ian McGinn, competing in his first race of the season, was an impressive fourth (26:50), while freshman Hartnel Paultre continued to impress, finishing fifth in 26:52.
 
The Keydets' 24 points were easily enough to best second place Furman (72 points), who was ranked #14 in last week's USTFCCCA Southeast Region Rankings. Anderson (S.C.) finished third with 82 points, while Charleston Southern placed fourth (127). Wofford (133) and North Greenville (195) finished fifth and sixth, with Coker (204) placing seventh. Brevard and St. Andrews were next, finishing with 206 and 209 points respectively, while Presbyterian College (282), Fort Valley State (287) and Claflin (313) rounded out the team standings.
 
Also in action for the Keydets were Hayden Hodges (26:55/8th) and Dean Gonsalves (26:59/10th). Gonsalves, a longtime 800-meter specialist, was competing in his first collegiate 8K. Will Thompson (27:06/12th), Jason Thorpe (28th/27:46), Jordanis Lozier (29th/27:47) and Frank Van Valkenburg (33rd/27:56) rounded out the VMI competitors.
 
VMI will return to action Friday, as the Keydets take part in the Queens University Invitational. Action at McAlpine Park is set for a 3:30 p.m. start.

Keydet Women Finish Second at Furman
GREENVILLE, S.C. - The VMI women's cross country team placed four finishers in the morning's top-12, en route to a second place team finish at the Gene Mullin Furman Invitational, held Saturday in Greenville, S.C.

Freshman Michelle Church led the way for VMI on the 5K course, finishing eighth with a 19:17 effort. Leah Schubel also finished in the top 10, clocking in at 19:29 to finish in 10th place. Schubel led freshmen Emily Dinning (19:30) and Hannah Dickinson (19:41) to the line, as Dinning and Dickinson finished 11th and 12th respectively.

The Keydets finished with 65 points, 18 markers ahead of the third place South Carolina Gamecocks. Regionally-ranked Furman, who placed 10th in last week's USTFCCCA Southeast Region Rankings, won the meet by scoring 23 points. Charleston Southern finished fourth with 108 points, while Anderson (S.C.) posted 118 markers. Brevard finished sixth (187), ahead of Presbyterian's 211-point effort, and Coker (232), St. Andrews (244) and Fort Valley State (281) rounded out the team standings.

Also competing for VMI Saturday were Nina Srikongyos (31st/20:21), Ally Kuehm (33rd/20:32), Molly Western (51st/21:27) and Lindsey Carty (56th/21:41).

VMI will return to action Friday, as the Keydets take part in the Queens University Invitational. Action at McAlpine Park is set for a 3:30 p.m. start.

Solis Second, Bucs Fourth at Furman Invite
CHARLESTON, S.C. - Freshman Alex Solis continued his strong season to help the Charleston Southern men's cross country team to a fourth place finish at the 2011 Gene Mullin Furman Invitational, hosted by the Paladins at the Furman Golf Course on Saturday.

The Bucs finished fourth with a score of 127 points and a combined time of 2:19.39. They boasted an average of 27:56 at the event. Fellow Big South member VMI won the event with a score of 24 points, while Keydet Noah Hagos took home top honors after finishing first overall with a time of 25:59.

Solis claimed his third top-10 finish of the season, taking second in the collegiate category with a time of 26:26. His time was just three seconds off of his personal best of 26:23, set at the College of Charleston Invitational.

Fellow newcomer Tyre Hines crossed the line in 27:31, taking 20th place to pick up his fourth top-20 finish of the season. Hines tied a personal record at the event, as he also ran a 27:31 at the College of Charleston Invitational on September 10.

Michael Marshburn and Scott Morrison were 29th and 30th, respectively for the Buccaneers. Marshburn's time of 28:02 was nearly one minute faster than his previous season-best time of 29:01 (CofC Invite). Morrison also showed improvements, shaving nearly 32 seconds off of his previous season-best by finishing the course in 28:05.

Matt Smith completed the course in 29:25 to take 46th place, beating his former PR by .01. Martin Hutchens took 58th place, finishing with a time of 30:45. His time is a new personal best, smashing his old personal record by nearly a minute. Derek Amick rounded things out for the Bucs, placing 63rd with a time of 31.19.

CSU will head to Alabama on October 15 for the Crimson Classic, hosted by the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa. They will use the meet as a final tune up before heading to the Big South Conference Championships on October 29 in Myrtle Beach, S.C.

Lady Bucs Take Fourth at Gene Mullin Invite
GREENVILLE, S.C. - The Charleston Southern women's cross country team took fourth place overall with a score of 108 points at the 2011 Gene Mullin Furman Invitational, hosted by the Paladins at the Furman Golf Course in Greenville on Saturday.

The Bucs complied a team time of 1:41:20 with three top-25 finishes. They ended the day with an average time of 20:16. Host Furman won the event with a score of 23, while Big South for VMI took second with 65 points. The South Carolina Gamecocks finished just ahead of the Bucs with a score of 83 points. Anderson's Whitney Bishoff won the event in a time of 17:56, while the Paladin's Erin Barker took second at 18:38.

Once again it was junior Adrienne Cuff who led the way with a seventh place finish. Her time of 19:16 was a personal best and was ten seconds faster of her season-best 19:36 set at the College of Charleston Invitational. Heidi Dean also set a new personal record with a time of 19:58. She finished 18th to take more than 20 seconds off of her previous season-best performance.

Eloisa Paredes completed the course in 20:07 to take 23rd place for the Buccaneers. She also set a new personal record, shaving nearly a minute off of her previous personal best of 20:57 set October 24 at the Will Wilson/Citadel Invite. Teammate Susanna McKee, who also set a new PR, was close behind and in 26th place. McKee ran a 20:34 to improve her time by more than a minute.

In 34th place was Hannah Burkholder, who finished with a time of 21:25. She took more than two minutes off of her previous season-best of 23:36.49 and was closely followed by teammate Yana Lostspeich in 37th place. Lostspeich ran a 21:33 to beat her previous personal best by more than a minute.

Mary Davidson also competed for the Bucs, taking 40th place with a time of 21:44. Ashlyn Kunda was 71st with a time of 23:53, setting a new PR.

Charleston Southern will continue on to Tuscaloosa, Ala., next weekend. They will compete in the Crimson Classic at the University of Alabama on October 15.