EKU Women Move Up to #5 in Southeast



NEW ORLEANS – The Eastern Kentucky University women’s cross country team used a strong showing at the Panorama Farms Invitational this weekend to climb one spot to No. 5 in the most recent NCAA Southeast Region rankings, released by the U.S. Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) on Monday.

EKU scored 118 points and fell only to host Virginia (42 points) and William and Mary (67 points) on Saturday. The Colonels defeated a team ranked above them in the region, North Carolina (No. 4), as well as Harvard (No. 5 in the Northeast Region), Ole Miss (No. 6 in the South Region) and Auburn (No. 8 in the South Region).

Junior Ann Eason led the way for the women, finishing fifth out of 117 runners while completing the 5K course in a time of16:58.3. Senior Una Britton was second on the team and 22nd overall with a time of 17:39.7. Sophomores Cecile Chevillard (26th / 17:43.9) and Ashley Svec (32nd / 18:01.8) and junior Anna Reddin (33rd (18:08.3) rounded out the Colonels' top five.

The EKU men’s team, meanwhile, dropped a spot to No. 2 in the Southeast Region poll released on Monday. The Colonel men – currently ranked No. 11 in the country – also delivered a strong performance at the Panorama Farms Invitational, finishing second and defeating a nationally-ranked opponent, Virginia (No. 16), as well as numerous regionally-ranked opponents; however, they were edged by Southeast Region rival North Carolina and were, thus, replaced by the Tar Heels atop the rankings.

Despite the second-place finish, senior Soufiane Bouchikhi dominated the men’s race, covering the 8K course in a time of 23:22.4 and defeating the second-place finisher by nearly 30 seconds. Newcomer Ambrose Maritim was the Colonels' second finisher, placing sixth out of 102 runners with a time of 23:57.0. Senior Wade Meddles (17th / 24:09.2) and juniors Ole Hesselbjerg (25th / 24:18.1) and Thijs Nijhuis (27th / 24:19.6) rounded out Eastern's scoring five.

The EKU cross country teams return to action this Saturday, Oct. 4, at the Greater Louisville Classic.