Sept. 28, 2017
Cross Country at the Joe Piane Invitational
COLUMBIA, S.C. -- The University of South Carolina cross country team returns to action after a three-week layoff when it competes Friday at the 2017 Joe Piane Invitational, hosted by Notre Dame. Action for the Gamecocks begins at 2:30 p.m. ET with the Open Division 5K and continues at 3:15 p.m. with the Gold Division 5K.
Over 50 women's squads and more than 100 total will be in South Bend joining the Gamecocks. No. 1 Colorado highlights the list of women's entries, while No. 3 New Mexico, No. 9 Arkansas, No. 12 Notre Dame, No. 26 Ohio State and No. 27 Utah also represent the latest USTFCCCA Top-30 national poll this weekend.
Three SEC schools are part of the field: Alabama, Arkansas and South Carolina.
FROM THE COACH
"We opened up with a nice win over Clemson and Coastal Carolina, and I was happy about that. The next week, we went down to Georgia and finished right in the middle of the SEC Preview, where we beat LSU and Tennessee. I was very happy about that. Now we're heading off to a meet that will have a lot of national-caliber teams. It will be a good test to see how far we've come over the past couple of weeks." -- Andrew Allden
LAST TIME OUT -- SEPT. 9 -- BULLDOG SEC PREVIEW
South Carolina finished fourth at the Bulldog SEC Preview, hosted Sept. 9 by the University of Georgia. Sophomore Anna Kathryn Stoddard led the Gamecocks with a 6K time of 22:44.9, good for 16th overall at the meet. Allison Mueller (23:11.7), Kaylee Wessel (23.14.5), Heather Stone (23:17.6) and Brooke Wilson (23.18.8) rounded out Carolina's top five performers.
Five Gamecocks made their 6K debuts at the meet: Stone, Wilson, Rachel Hensler, Sarah Riser and Kylee Yturralde. Each ran a personal best, as did sophomore Sarah-Sims McGrath, the sixth-highest Gamecock finisher in 23:45.5.
South Carolina will return to Athens Oct. 27 for the 2017 SEC Championships.
LAST SEASON AT THE JOE PIANE INVITATIONAL
South Carolina placed 15th out of 28 teams last season at the Joe Piane Invitational. Among current Gamecocks, Allie Sprague led the way with an 80th-place showing in a time of 18:24.1. Anna Kathryn Stoddard came in 84th at 18:24.7, and Allison Mueller ran 18:34.1 to place 100th individually.
SEPT. 2 -- CAROLINA CHALLENGE CHAMPIONS
The Gamecocks defended their team championship at the Carolina Challenge on Sept. 2, opening the season by dominating the seven-team field. Anna Kathryn Stoddard posted a 5K time of 18:32.1 to lead Carolina and place third overall, while Kaylee Wessel, Brooke Wilson, Allison Mueller and Heather Stone also finished in the top-10.
Wessel ran a 5K personal best of 18:36.2, one of 11 collegiate PRs achieved by the Gamecocks at the meet. Veterans Colleen Openshaw (19:08.6), Sarah-Sims McGrath (19:13.5), Morgan Lee (19:39.6), Megan Buechler (19:54.2) and Julia Nardone (20:10.7) also ran their collegiate bests at the Sandhills REC.
UP NEXT FOR THE GAMECOCKS
The Gamecocks are back in the Soda City on Saturday, Oct. 7, for the Koala Classic, hosted by Columbia College.
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