STANDISH, ME – Simmons Cross Country ran to a third place finish at the 2013 Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) Women's Cross Country Championship for the first time in program history at Saint Joseph's College on Saturday afternoon.
The Emmanuel College Saints cruised to the crown with 48 team points, securely ahead of Saint Joseph's, which finished as the runner-up, despite placing the top three individual participants, with 66 total points in the 5K event. Overall, 12 teams and 114 runners competed in the women's race.
Simmons placed third with 69 points as Shelly Potter (York, Maine) led all Sharks finishing ninth. Ellen Girouard (Wrentham, Mass.) crossed the line thirty seconds later for an 11th place finish, while Bre Glynn (Marshfield, Mass.), and Sara Harland (Pembroke, Mass.) finished 13th and 14th, respectively to round out the top 20 for the Sharks.
Norwich University tallied 104 points and finished fourth and Johnson & Wales University rounded out the top five competing institutions with 108 points on the afternoon.
Saint Joseph's junior Amber Dostie (Standish, Maine) won the conference race for the third-consecutive season after touring the course in 20:32 and was closely followed by a pair of teammates. Monks' sophomore Lauren Rabideau (Ballston Spa, N.Y.), the 2012 GNAC Rookie of the Year, was six seconds off the pace and was the runner-up and St. Joe's junior Heather Eaton (Lincolnville, Maine) placed third with a 20:53 effort.
Closing out the top five were Johnson & Wales junior Joanne Mumbey (Dobbs Ferry, N.Y.), who was fourth with a 21:04 time, and Emmanuel freshman Chapel Guarnieri (Pepperell, Mass.), who notched a fifth-place finish with a21:10 performance.
Four of the following five runners hailed from Emmanuel, as senior Molly Metievier (Keene, N.H.) was sixth, senior Meaghan Mauer (South Hadley, Mass.) finished seventh, junior Chloe Egan (Burlington, Vt.) placed eighth and sophomore Janelle Winship (Prospect, Maine) raced to a 10th-place finish. Each of the top-10 finishers garners All-Conference recognition.
Guarnieri, who had already established herself as one of the top newcomers in the conference this fall with several weekly honors to her name, claimed GNAC Women's Cross Country Rookie of the Year accolades as the top-finishing first-year runner in the conference championship meet.
Voting for the GNAC Coach of the Year awards also took place at the event and Saint Joseph's Head Coach Ray Putnam deservedly earned the honor for the second-consecutive season.
With the individual victory, Dostie becomes the first women's runner in GNAC history to win the conference championship on three occasions.
Lasell College (6th, 187 points), Rivier University (7th, 196), Anna Maria College (8th, 214), University of Saint Joseph (9th, 225), Mount Ida College (10th, 301) and Albertus Magnus College (11th, 337) also competed in the 2013 GNAC Championship. Suffolk University also featured runners in the event but did not place.
2013 WOMEN'S CROSS COUNTRY ALL-CONFERENCE TEAM:
Amber Dostie, Saint Joseph's
Lauren Rabideau, Saint Joseph's
Heather Eaton, Saint Joseph's
Joanne Mumbey, Johnson & Wales
Chapel Guarnieri, Norwich
Molly Metivier, Emmanuel
Meaghan Mauer, Emmanuel
Chloe Egan, Emmanuel
Shelly Potter, Simmons
Janelle Winship, Emmanuel
MAJOR AWARD RECIPIENTS:
2013 GNAC Runner of the Year: Amber Dostie, Saint Joseph's
2013 GNAC Rookie of the Year: Chapel Guarnieri, Norwich
2013 GNAC Coach of the Year: Ray Putnam, Saint Joseph's