UCF Cross Country Teams Breeze Through Season Opener

September 11, 1999

ORLANDO - The University of Central Florida women's cross country team rallied for a first place finish at the UCF Invitational Saturday while the men fought for an outstanding fourth place finish.

UCF's Sonja Shedden (Troy, Pa./Troy HS) trampled the field of 113 women with a striking first-place time of 18:19.62 in the 5K run. Shedden finished more than 20 seconds ahead of last year's TAAC champion, Sarah Howard (Georgia State), who ran at 18:40.46.

The UCF women paced the competition, landing three top 10 finishes. Sara Dillman (Marshall, Mich./Marshall HS) finished seventh at 19:28.72 while April Vitori (Middletown, Ohio/Middletown HS) strode in at 19:48.95. "The girls were really pumped for this race," said UCF head coach Marcia Mansur-Wentworth. "This is the best team we've ever lined up and I think this meet is an indication of good things to come."

The men were not far behind as Lou Snelling (Seminole/Seminole HS) and Steven Cournelius (Valpariso/Niceville HS) paved the way for a fourth place team finish. Snelling took tenth out of 125 men in the 8K with a time of 26:41.02, while Cournelius crossed the finish line nineteenth at 27:42.43.

The cross country teams will look to build on the impressive start as they travel to Raleigh, N.C. next Saturday for the Wolfpack Invitational. -UCF-

WOMEN'STEAM SCORES 1 UCF 45 Average: 19:28.14 2 Campbell University 48 Average: 19:40.64 3 Georgia State University 77 Average: 19:51.45 4 Jacksonville University 107 Average: 20:17.51 4 Florida Southern College 107 Average: 20:19.34 6 Rollins College 193 Average: 21:57.72 7 Mercer University 214 Average: 22:31.71 8 Bethune-Cookman College 272 Average: 26:13.56 9 Stetson University 279 Average: 24:08.51 10 Warner Southern College 308 Average: 24:51.99 11 Florida Tech 309 Average: 26:07.11 12 Embry-Riddle Aero University 312 Average: 26:12.29 13 Palm Beach Atlantic College 336 Average: 26:53.38

WOMEN'S TOP 10 FINISHES 1 Shedden, Sonja UCF 18:19.62 2 Howard, Sarah Georgia State 18:40.46 3 Campos, Adriana Jacksonville University 19:21.02 4 Hughes, Brittanie Georgia State 19:22.50 5 Lee, Heather Campbell University 19:23.43 6 Nickles, Jenny Campbell University 19:24.75 7 Dillman, Sara UCF 19:28.72 8 Quinn, Tiffany Campbell University 19:39.68 9 Susie, Welty Campbell University 19:43.11 10 Vitori, April UCF 19:48.95