MANSFIELD, Texas – The University of Dallas women's cross country team opened the 2018 season on Saturday with a 5k at the DBU Patriot/Orville Rogers XC Opener. Host NCAA Division II Dallas Baptist University scored first place with a 15 and placed the top 11 spots with times beneath 20 minutes.
However, the Crusaders achieved third place with a score of 97 and average time of 21:52. They edged fellow NCAA DIII opponent UT-Dallas, who scored a 124 and averaged a time of 22:44 for fourth.
Anna Wilgenbusch (St. Paul, Minn.) debuted in her first collegiate race with the team's best individual time (20:15.7). Her personal record (PR) was good enough for 13th and was the lone time within the top 20 in the standings.
Classmate Sabrina Lucio (Chino, Calif.) followed with the next lowest time with a 21:17.6 for 22nd. Two of UD's top returners from last season, Clare Hernandez (Dade City, Fla.) and Emma Kate Callahan (Overland Park, Kan.), achieved respective times of 21:48.8 and 22:12.1 for 27th and 28th.
Wilgenbush, Lucio, Isabella Childs, Katie Dieteman, and Hailey Guth were the five freshmen to appear in their first collegiate race. Additionally, Courtney Nguyen (Houston, Texas) and Amy Foote (Saint Paul, Minn.) – a dual sport runner in track and field from 2018 – also made their college cross country debuts.
"The team treated today like a tempo run through half the race, then tried to pick up the pace at the end," Head Coach Matt Barber explained. "Ultimately we won't start running fast in practice for a couple more weeks so I am ecstatic with how everyone ran coming off the summer."
Dallas returns to the trails in two weeks for the TLU Bulldog Invitational on September 15.