The Valparaiso women’s cross country squad placed five runners in the top-third of the field Saturday at Vanderbilt’s Commodore Classic in Nashville, Tenn., helping the Crusaders to a sixth-place team finish.
Valpo totaled 181 points on the meet for its sixth place finish among the 18 competing teams. The host Commodores took home top team honors with 34 points, while Georgia State’s Janel Blancett earned the individual crown.
The Crusaders were led Saturday by senior Lindsey Gilman (South Bend, Ind./Marian), who paced the Valpo contingent for the first time in her career. Gilman covered the 5K course in 19:57.20, good for a 28th place finish. Fellow seniors Whitney Bowman (Portage, Ind./Portage [Purdue]) and Sara Christensen (Bettendorf, Iowa/Pleasant Valley) crossed the line back-to-back in 36th and 37th place with times of 20:14.98 and 20:18.28, respectively.
Senior Caitlin Sauerhage (Rising Sun, Ind./Rising Sun [Indiana]) was the next Crusader runner to cross the line, placing 43rd with a time of 20:30.72. Senior Alyssa Bradford (Mukwonago, Wis./Mukwonago) rounded out Valpo’s top five finishers, completing the course in 20:45.72 to earn a 49th place finish.
Valparaiso returns to the course in just under two weeks, taking the short trip east along the Indiana Toll Road to compete in the Notre Dame Invitational on Friday, October 2.