NEWVILLE, Pa. - The Bryn Mawr cross country team closed out their 2015 campaign earlier Saturday morning with an impressive performance at the NCAA Mid East Regional Championship. Senior Hannah Hastings led the way for the Owls with a great top-50 finish, and the team took home 17th place overall out of 50 teams.
Hastings completed the race in a time of 23:20 for a 43rd place finish, less than a minute outside of a top-15 spot in the final standings. Sophomore Kate Edwards took the second finishing spot for the Owls, coming home in 89th place with a time of 24:06. Rebekah Gallop and Alex Beda came in close behind each other, finishing in 126th and 139th, respectively, with times of 24:50 and 25:03. Ashley Macina closed out the top five for Bryn Mawr with a finish in 167th in a time of 25:39. Overall on the day, the times for Edwards, Gallop, Beda and Macina were all personal records.
Also competing in the race on the day were freshmen Haley Varnum and Chelsea Thangavelu. The duo gained valuable experience in a talented postseason race, and both put up good finishes while doing so. Varnum earned a 227th place finish with a time of 26:57, while Thangavelu came in close behind in 238th in a time of 27:12.
Today's 17th place finish was the best for the Owls in the event since 2012, when they brought home 16th. The performance definitely brought excitement to Bryn Mawr head coach Jason Hewitt: "Hannah and Kate have been so solid up front for us all season. It's been like clock work with the two of them and they put many of the teams behind us out of contest right off the bat," proclaimed Hewitt. "Where we really pressured for a top twenty finish was with the depth we should from Bekah, Alex, and Ashley. These three just put together a great capstone to the season and kept us moving up the region! Haley and Chelsea round out the group and performed admirably for firsties in their regionals debut. You can expect a steady progression upwards from the two of them over the next three years as well!"
Overall, 365 runners competed in the event on the day. Johns Hopkins brought home the team win on the day, and the Blue Jays also featured the top three runners individually as well in Sophia and Tess Meehan and Caroline Smith. Other Centennial Conference team finishes included Dickinson (2nd), Haverford (3rd), and Swarthmore (5th). Bryn Mawr beat out several high powered teams with their impressive performance today, including Lebanon Valley, Eastern, and Centennial foe Franklin & Marshall.