Oct. 28, 2007
COLUMBUS, Ohio - The Purdue women's cross country made a fast improvement from a year ago, placing eighth at the 2007 Big Ten Championships, hosted by Ohio State University on Sunday. The men's squad received an impressive outing by sophomore Matt De Silva, but still finished 10th as a team.
The Boilermaker women shaved 60 points off their team score from a year ago, amassing 237 points to move up two spots in the Big Ten standings from last season. Sophomore Katie Morrical returned from an injury to lead the group, clocking a career-best 6K time of 20:56.25 to take 25th individually. Her time was the fastest ever by a Boilermaker at the conference championships (since the race was moved to 6K in 2003), and the second-fastest 6K time ever posted at Purdue. Classmate Kristin Phillips and rookie Kristina Krasich crossed the line 48th and 59th as Phillips knocked more than a minute off her 6K time from two weeks ago to post a 21:35.97, and Krasich eclipsed the 22-minute mark with a time of 21:54.82. Both Phillips and Krasich made their mark on the Purdue record lists as well, as Phillips' time is now the third-fastest 6K conference mark and the ninth-fastest 6K time in school history, while Krasich's time is good for the fifth-fastest 6K by a Boilermaker at the conference meet.
Freshman Erin Ragouzis and senior Danielle Ginther wrapped up the Boilermakers' scoring, placing 67th and 69th, respectively. Ragouzis came in at 22:12.69, while Ginther was just behind her at 22:17.20; both times are substantial career-bests for the pair. The Purdue women also captured a point for the Old Gold and Black in the coveted Crimson and Gold Cup standings, topping archrival Indiana University, which placed ninth.
The Purdue men put together a team score of 286, but saw great promise in the individual performance of Matt De Silva. In their final 8K outing of the season, De Silva finished 27th overall, crossing the line in 24:39.46. The mark is just shy of his personal best, which he achieved at the Pre-National Invitational two weeks ago. Freshmen Jacob Laird and Robert Shiflett were the next two Boilermakers to complete the course as Laird clocked a career-best time of 25:52.65, while Shiflett came in at 25:55.58. The final four Purdue runners finished in a pack as junior George Noah, sophomore Steve Swank and freshmen Matt Clifford and Alex Folk all completed the course between 26:48.41 and 27:11.07.
The University of Minnesota captured the women's team title, edging out Michigan State University by one point with a score of 72, while the University of Iowa's Diane Nukuri placed first overall with a mark of 19:37.60. The University of Wisconsin dominated the men's race as Matt Withrow led them to a team score of 33 points with his first-place finish and time of 23:44.37.
The Boilermakers return to action Nov. 10, at the NCAA Great Lakes Regional, hosted by Indiana in Bloomington, Ind.