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Women's Cross Country to Open Season at the Covered Bridge Open This Weekend

Women's Cross Country to Open Season at the Covered Bridge Open This Weekend

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August 29, 2006

Season Opener this weekend...

Coastal Carolina University’s women’s cross country team and head coach Alan Connie will kick off the 2006 cross country season this weekend as they compete in the Covered Bridge Open in Boone, N.C., Friday, September 2 at 5 p.m.

Do I Hear Six in a Row?...

Leading CCU as it attempts to capture its sixth consecutive Big South Championship title is senior captain Diana Hagler (Beach Haven, N.J./ Southern Regional), who completed the 6k course 97th at 22:50 in the Southeast Regional meet last season. Sophomore Felicitas Mensing (Neuhausen, Germany/ Leplery Secondary School) comes off an impressive freshman campaign, placing fifth at the Big South Championships and 37th at the Southeast Regional at 21:28, as well as notching 2005 All-Big South Honors.

Domination in the Big South....

Coastal Carolina University’s women’s cross country squad has been chosen first in the Big South Conference’s annual preseason poll, as voted by the League’s Head Cross Country Coaches and Sports Information Directors and announced today by the Conference office.

Coastal Carolina has been picked to win its sixth-straight Big South women’s cross country title, receiving 13 first-place votes and 157 out of a possible 162 points. The Lady Chants, which have claimed a Big South-record 11 championships, finished 16 points ahead of second-place Liberty.

The 2005 Big South cross country season begins Friday, Sept. 1. The New Balance men’s and women’s cross country Conference Championship is slated for Saturday, Oct. 28, and will be hosted by Charleston Southern University.

Experience Matters....

Also returning this year for Coastal is junior Aubrey Bergquist (Pataskala, Ohio/Watkins Memorial) who finished 33rd at the Big South Cross Country Championships, Nikki Jasperson (Fort Wayne, Ind./Bishop Luers) who placed 35th, Keli Jo White (Wadsworth, Ohio/Wadsworth) who placed 34th,and Claudia Witte (Germany/Sport gymnasium Neubrandenburg).

Book on the Rookies...

Coach Connie brings in six newcomers for the 2006 season including a transfer from New Orleans and a German Junior National Champion. Junior transfer Diana Jepchirchir (Kampala, Uganda/University of New Orleans) comes to Coastal after Hurricane Katrina forced the cutting of the track and field team at UNO. Jepchirchir was the Sun Belt Conference Cross Country Champion along with being named Sun Belt Runner of the Year. She finished 24th at the NCAA South Region Championship and earned All-Region honors. Freshman Julia Viellehner (Winhoring, Germany/Maria Ward Gymnasium) was a two-time German Junior National 10,000 meter champion. She was also a two-time German Junior National Half-Marathon Champion and the German Junior National Champion for cross country in 2004. Other newcomers for 2006 include, Peggy Busbee (Aiken, S.C./South AIken), Theresa Schamberger (Kendalville, Ind./East Noble), Maranie Staab (Trafford, Pa./Penn Trafford), and Katheryn Zenowitz (Groton Long Pt., Conn./Robert E. Fitch).

A Look Back...

Last year the Lady Chanticleers finished third in the Covered Bridge Open, 19 points behind powerhose Florida State and six points behind Davidson. Mensing placed ninth, Hagler placed 16th, White placed 40th, Berquist clocked in at 42nd and Jasperson came in the 75th slot.