PHILADELPHIA – For the ninth year in a row, the Philadelphia University women's cross country team claimed first place in the Philadelphia Metropolitan Championship. The Rams placed its top four runners inside the top-10 to claim the latest edition of the race help Saturday at Belmont Plateau.
Philadelphia—competing for the first time in 2016—claimed the team title with 26 points, 24 points ahead of second place University of the Sciences. Bloomfield was a distant third as it scored 100 points.
Stephanie Watson (Newport, Vt./North Country Union) had a strong day for the Rams as she completely the Plateau's 5-kilometer course in 21 minutes, 36.0 seconds to finish in third, tying her career best. She was the first runner to cross the finish line to affect the team standings as the first two runners were from schools that didn't complete in the team competition.
In her first collegiate race, Meghan Horan (Honey Brook, Pa./Twin Valley) turned in a fifth-place finish thanks to a time of 21:46.6. Jessica Thies (Mohrsville, Pa./Schuylkill Valley) was right behind Horan in the seventh position as she finished the race in 21:48.0. Victoria Frisbie (Lansdale, Pa./North Penn) completed the top-10 with a time of 22:40.0.
The Rams' final scoring position went to Maddie Conway (Glen Mills, Pa./Penncrest) after she ran the course in 23:12.8 to come in 13th overall.
Erin Raup (Danville, Pa./Danville) was Saturday's 16th-place finisher with a time of 23:27.6. Nicole Stough (York, pa./West York) completed her first collegiate place with the 18th place time of 23:38.2. Kaitlyn Beckham (Gettysburg, Pa./Fairfield Area) rounded out the top-20 as she turned in a time of 24:05.6.
Erin Young (Huntington Valley, Pa./Archbishop Wood) beat out teammate Naomi Scharf (Felton, Pa./Red Lion) for the 22nd position. Young's first collegiate race resulted in a time of 24.23.2, while Scharf had to settle for the 23rd-place time of 24:45.0.
Dyani Hairston (Pottsgrove, Pa./Pottsgrove) was 26th after completing her collegiate debut with a time of 25:13.3
Post University's Kendall Fitzgerald was posted the individual championship time of 21:22.8.
Philadelphia heads to Kutztown University to compete in the Division II Challenge on Saturday, Sept. 17.