Women's cross country outraces ranked teams, places second in Louisville Classic

Katherine Cook (left) and Jessica Wilson were 12th and ninth, respectively, out of 332 runners in the Greater Louisville Cross Country Classic on Oct. 1, 2016. (File photo by Russ Dillingham for Bates College)

LOUISVILLE, Ky. -- The Bates women's cross country team outraced No. 16 nationally ranked Emory, No. 22 St. Thomas (Minn.) and No. 20 Stevens and was the runner-up by only four points to No. 14 Hope in a banner race for the Bobcats at the Greater Louisville Cross Country Classic. 

Bates ran in the enormous meet's Women's Silver Race, also known as Division III Pre-Nationals, which included 39 teams spread out over at least five of the eight regions as defined by the U.S. Track & Field Coaches Association of America.

All five scoring Bobcats placed within the top 42 out of 332 individuals in the race, which was held at E.P. "Tom" Sawyer State Park, the site of the NCAA Championships in November. 

"We executed really well," said head coach Jay Hartshorn. "Everyone just found where they should be in the race early on and then they really moved up. We were in control the whole time."

Senior Jessica Wilson (Cumberland, Maine) led Bates' first five in ninth place out of 332 individuals, covering the 6-kilometer course in 21:55.76. Junior Katherine Cook (South Burlington, Vt.) took 12th place in 22:10.73 and sophomore Katie Barker (Burlington, Vt.) was 19th (22:29.97). Senior Molly Chisholm (Wayland, Mass.) placed 31st overall (22:50.95) and first-year Olivia LaMarche (Lynnfield, Mass.) rounded out the scoring in 42nd place (23:08.06).

Bates also had two displacers in sophomore Wendy Memishian (Medway, Mass.), who placed 69th overall (23:33.29), and junior Mary Szatkowski (Buxton, Maine) in 74th (23:37.68).

Also running in Louisville were sophomore Sarah Rothmann (Andover, Mass.) in 99th place (24:07.19), junior Callie Reynolds (West Hartford, Conn.) in 119th (24:26.27) and first-year Megan Clark (Manchester, Mass.) in 179th (25:20.26). Bates' top 10 runners so far this season made the trip to Louisville, while the team's other runners competed at the Colby Invitational. 

Bates has received votes but has not cracked the national rankings yet this season in the USTFCCCA coaches poll; the team is currently ranked seventh in the New England region. Emory is ranked No. 1 in the South/Southeast while St. Thomas is ranked third in the Central Region. Hope is rated second in the Great Lakes.

Bates also outraced Stevens Institute, ranked fourth in the Atlantic Region, Rhodes, ranked second in the South/Southeast, DePauw, ranked seventh in the Great Lakes, among others.