October 28, 2016
Tech cross country teams with strong performances at ACC Championships
Behind Katie Kennedy, the women's squad finished a program-best third, while the men's team wound up fourth
ACC Championships Results

ACC Women's 6K Results

ACC Men's 8K Results

Behind Katie Kennedy’s 11th-place finish, the Virginia Tech women’s cross country team came in a program-best third place at the 2016 ACC Cross Country Championships held Friday morning at Wake Med Park in Cary, North Carolina.

Kennedy led a stunning performance by the Tech women’s squad. The junior from Springfield, Virginia ran the 6K course in a time of 20 minutes, 22.3 seconds. The performance marked the best of her career at an ACC Championships meet.

Behind Kennedy, the Tech women finished with 153 points – easily the best finish by the program since the school joined the ACC for the 2004-05 season. The Hokies’ previous best finish came in 2006 and 2007 when they wound up fifth in both years.

“We really grew today as a team, with aggressive, tough racing up front from our veterans, and the freshmen ran fantastic in support,” Tech distance coach Ben Thomas said. “Katie Kennedy has gone to a whole new level with her toughness and confidence in racing. She’s been consistent this past summer and this fall, and it’s paying off.

“Abby [Motley] and Lauren [Berman] came through with their best races ever, and our true freshmen were superb. I couldn’t be prouder with all the girls’ efforts today.”

NC State won the championship on the women’s side with 53 points, followed by Notre Dame with 74 points. Notre Dame’s Anna Rohrer won the individual crown with a time of 19:26.4.

For Tech, Lauren Berman was the team’s second-best finisher, coming in 29th with a time of 20:54.1. Abigail Motley was 32nd with a time of 20:58.0, while freshman Kayla Richardson wound up 43rd with a time of 21:12.4. Laurie Barton (48th), Sara Freix (54th) and Hanna Green (64th) rounded out the Hokies’ top seven.

On the men’s side, the Hokies finished fourth with 128 points – the same finish for them as last year. Syracuse won the team title for the fourth straight year, while Virginia was second with 72 points and NC State third with 82. The Tech men now have finished fifth or better at the ACC Championships on seven occasions since the school joined the league.

“I love this guys’ group,” Thomas said. “We’ve been shorthanded all year, with some planned redshirting [Neil Gourley and Patrick Joseph] and some unplanned illnesses [Peter Seufer]. But these guys never let up and stepped up big time.

“Tremendous races by Andrew [Gaiser] and Daniel [Jaskowak] to earn All-ACC honors. [Brent] Musselman, [Jack] Joyce, and [Vincent] Ciattei hung on well in support. Diego Zarate closed like a freight train.

“This group of guys has done an outstanding job of controlling what they can, sticking together through some tough breaks, and have still come out battling every race. A truly blue-collar group that I couldn’t be prouder of.”

Andrew Gaiser and Daniel Jaskowak led the men’s squad with top-20 finishes. Gaiser came in 16th with a time of 23:43.0, while Jaskowak was right behind him with a time of 23:43.08.

The Hokies’ Diego Zarate came in 23rd with a time of 23:53.9, while Brent Musselman was 34th with a time of 24:14.0. Jack Joyce and Vincent Ciattei were 38th and 39th, respectively, with Daniel Rau rounding out the top seven with a 61st-place finish.

The Hokies now prepare to be the hosts for the Hokie Open, which will be held Nov. 4.

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