WILMINGTON, N.C., Oct. 30, 2010 - The James Madison cross country team won the 2010 Colonial Athletic Association Championship on the campus on UNC Wilmington on Saturday.
JMU had seven runners finish the championship in the top 23 out of 95 runners, but the top five runners scored in the top 12 to medal and earn All-CAA status. They finished with a team total of 28 points. William and Mary, the seven-time defending champion, was second with 46 points.
"We had our best meet of the year," head coach Dave Rinker said. "The entire team stuck to the race plan."
Senior Alison Parris (Saint Leonard, Md./Patuxent) proved to be the CAA's top women's runner as she won the six-kilometer women's race for the first time in her career in 20 minutes, 23 seconds. Parris, three-time CAA Runner of the Week in 2010, won the race by 26 seconds over sophomore Stacey Nobles (Virginia Beach, Va./Ocean Lakes), who was the runner-up in 20:49.
"Alison [Parris] ran the first loop under control, then pushed the second loop which opened a gap," Rinker said. "She then relaxed and rolled home. Stacey [Nobles] ran in fourth place for most the race. She really unloaded with 300 to go and passed two [for second place]."
William and Mary freshman Elaina Balouris crossed the line one second later in third at 20:50.
Sophomore Katie Harman(Clarksville, Md./River Hill) took fifth place with a time of 21:08 and sophomore Katie Gorman (Lafayette Hill, Pa./Plymouth-Whitemarsh) was eighth in 21:24. Junior Jess Zozos (Glenshaw, Pa./Shaler) rounded out the team scoring in 12th with a time of 21:48.
Also for the Dukes, senior Kelly Jemison (Alexandria, Va./West Potomac) and freshman Erin Lopresti (Cranberry Township, Pa./Seneca Valley) finished back-to-back in 22nd and 23rd with the same time of 22:24.
Sophomore Annie Reiner (Virginia Beach, Va./Ocean Lakes) completed the course in 22:32, good for 28th, while senior Lynne Colombo (Marlborough, Conn./RHAM) was 60th in 23:37 and senior Mariah Hagadone (Mt. Solon, Va./Buffalo Gap) took 67th place in 23:50.
The championship is the first for JMU since 2002 and the sixth all-time in the program's history.
Following JMU and William and Mary, George Mason took third with 102 points, Northeastern fourth with 114 points and Towson fifth with 122 points. UNC Wilmington (141), Delaware (182), Georgia State (183), VCU (273) and Hofstra (302) rounded out the ten-team field.
JMU will be back in action on Friday, Nov. 5 at the Cavalier Open in Charlottesville, Va. The Dukes will then head on to the NCAA Regional race on Saturday, Nov. 13 in Louisville, Ky.