Junior Keri Lambert won her first collegiate meet on Saturday at Williams’ Purple Valley Classic, leading the women to a strong fourth-place finish, while the men’s team placed sixth, both out of fields of 16 teams.
Lambert “dominated a field of 202 runners, many of whom compete for some of the top Div. III programs in the country,” said coach John Adamson. She finished the 6k is 22:00 minutes — 26 seconds ahead of the closest runner. Averaging 5:54 per mile, Lambert was the only woman to post an average mile time under six minutes.
Ali Simeone ’13 also had a great race, clocking in at 22:31 for fourth place. Simeone was just a second behind the third-place finisher. “Simeone showed that she is among the best in the region and will once again be contending for All-American honors later in the season,” said coach Adamson.
“Ali is such a steady and consistent force for our team. She brings evenness to all that she does both at practice and on meet day, and I think she provides such a powerful example for the rest of our team.”
First-year Jessie Kaliski came in third among the Amherst runners, placing 36th. “She has stepped right into our top seven and will be a key contributor going forward for us,” said Adamson. Victoria Sosnowski ’14, Lauren Almeida ’13 and Elodie Reed ’13 rounded out the Jeff scoring at 42nd, 50th and 51st, respectively, with Reed finishing just a second behind classmate Almeida.
Adamson said, “over the course of the season our third-seventh runners are going to need to get closer to our second runner if we are going to compete and be successful at the highest levels.” But he is certain the team will rise to the occasion. “Our workouts indicate that this can and will happen, and I know both the team and I have full confidence that it will.”
Co-captain Melissa Sullivan ’12 said that “our team looked solid this weekend, but we definitely have room for improvement. We went into this race just to run and see what happened, but we’ll be more strategic in the future.”
First-year KC Fussell led the way on the men’s side with a 27:16.06 for the 8k. Fussell was 24th of a 197 runners. Pat Grimes ’13 was 27th with a 27:26.57. Classmate Andrew Erksine crossed the tape 38th in 27:38.34. Sophomores Gus Greenstein and Alvaro Morales finished with times of 27:48.98 and 28:11.44, respectively, for 45th and 60th. Adron Pitmon ’13 was just behind for a 61st-place finish.
Coach Erik Nedeau is happy with the team’s performance: “The guys have really bought into the training, and the attitude on the team as they approach and prepare for each and every training session, as well as each race, has been phenomenal.” The team was coming off of a “challenging four-week training cycle, so while the results have been solid, I am most pleased with the effort and what we have been doing in preparation for the races.” Nedeau says that he “could not be prouder at this time,” and “it will be the next few meets where I am confident that we will really pick things up.”
The teams race again this Saturday at the NEICCCA Championship at Franklin Park.