Colleges: Lewis women’s cross country team No. 8 in national poll
By Dennis Nelson For Sun-Times Media September 19, 2013 8:40PM
Lewis cross country runner Amanda Farrough. | Supplied photo
Updated: October 23, 2013 6:23AM
The Lewis women’s cross country team is riding the wave of its second-place finish at the 5K Illinois Intercollegiate race. The Flyers have entered the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association Midwest Regional rankings at No. 8.
The Flyers, led by Great Lakes Valley Conference Runner of the Week, freshman Amanda Farrough, tied for the Illinois Intercollegiate team title with the University of Chicago. The Maroons, however, were declared the champion via tiebreaker, which went to the team with the fastest No. 6 runner.
“We knew that going into our first meet our team was a really talented, but (a) young team,” Lewis women’s cross country coach Dana Schwarting said. “We knew it would take a good performance to start getting some recognition, but now we have to sustain that throughout the season.”
Leading a field of more than 300 runners at the Calvin College Knight Invitational, St. Francis senior Mike Blaszczyk was named the NAIA and Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference Men’s Cross Country Runner of the Week.
Blaszczyk finished first among collegiate runners and second overall at the 27-team meet. The NAIA top-ranked Saints captured the team trophy as Blaszczyk covered the 8-kilometer course in 24 minutes, 36 seconds in his first race of the season.
For the second time in three weeks, St. Francis senior Hilary Halford was selected as the Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference Women’s Cross Country Runner of the Week. Halford, who also captured the distinction during the week ending Sept. 1, was sixth among collegiate runners and seventh overall in leading No. 4 St. Francis to a second-place showing at the 26-team Calvin College Knight Invitational.
Lewis redshirt sophomore right-side hitter Alexis Davito, a Lockport graduate, was named Great Lakes Valley Conference Baden Women’s Volleyball Offensive Player of the Week.
“Alexis had an awesome weekend,” Lewis coach Lorelee Smith said. “She generated kills for us against a variety of defenses.”
At the UW-Parkside Invitational, Davito helped the Flyers to a 3-1 record as she tallied 52 kills and 11 digs over 14 sets.
In leading defending Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference regular-season and tournament champion St. Francis to a 2-0 start in league play, senior outside hitter and Morris grad Laura Wills earned CCAC Volleyball Player of the Week honors.
Wills averaged 3.67 kills per set and hit at a .500 clip in the Saints’ three-set victories over Purdue University Calumet and Calumet College of St. Joseph.
Lewis goalkeeper Alec Pickett, a Providence product, was named Great Lakes Valley Conference Men’s Soccer Defensive Player of the Week.
Pickett helped Lewis go 1-0-1 in two contests last week, as he allowed one goal in 200 minutes of action, holding opponents to 0.45 goals per game. He’s played a key role in helping the Flyers (2-0-2, 1-0-1 GLVC) to their best start since 2008.