A fantastic day at Confederation Park in Calgary for the 2014 CCAA national championships resulted in both UBC Okanagan team’s narrowly missing the podium.
CALGARY, AB – The men’s cross country team finished seventh in Calgary at the 2014 CCAA national championship and the women’s cross country team were unable to defend their gold medal from 2013 and finished fifth, just missing the podium by two dozen points.
Pacing UBC Okanagan for every race this year West Kelowna runner Michelle Blackburne was once again tops for UBC Okanagan finishing the women’s 5-kilometre race in 20:30 for 17th overall, fourteenth amongst those scoring for a school.
Next to cross the line for UBC Okanagan was Alea Stockton, the Science student from Yellowknife led a pack of three Heat runners timing in at 20:54, just ahead of Shayna Quibell (21:03), who hails from Calgary and had a strong race on a familiar track. Nursing student Trisha Metro (21:10) was just seven seconds after Quibell.
The pack of three finished 21st, 29th, 33rd respectively and rounded out the scoring for UBC Okanagan who finished with 97 points.
Grand Prairie was the dominant winner with 19 points and spots two through four were packed tight together as SAIT for the second straight year grabbed Silver this year on their home turf with 72 points, Lethbridge College just grabbed a bronze with 74 points and Humber fourth with 75 points.
Displacer for UBC Okanagan were Julianna Neudorf (21:38; 49th) and Annelies Wentzel (21:39; 50th).
Winning the women’s race was Mirelle Martens who led from start to finish to cap off an amazing rookie season with the Grande Prairie Regional College Wolves.
The 18-year-old Martens captured first place in the women’s five-kilometre race with a time of 18 minutes 29 seconds. Jessy Lacourse (Cégep de Victoriaville) finished second with a time of 19:00. Lindsay Webster (Humber College) placed third in 19:13.
Martens won every race she entered during the year, including a gold medal performance at the Alberta Colleges Athletic Conference (ACAC) Championships on Oct. 25 in Fort McMurray, Alta.
Living in the shadow of the women’s team for most of the past 14 months the Heat men were primed to medal for the first time at a national championships heading into the race ranked fourth, although the goal of a medal was not reached the squad did enjoy their best ever finish at a national championship finishing seventh.
Scoring 116 points the Heat were 28 points the bronze medal winning St. Lambert (88) from Quebec and they were group in a pick where the scores of the fourth through seventh where separated by just nine points (105, 107, 109, 116). Humber from the OCAA grabbed gold with 64 points and another Ontario school, Fanshawe, took home the silver with 76 points.
18 year old Cael Warner a 2014 graduate of Penticton Secondary was the top male runner at the national championships finishing the race in 13th with a time of 28:22 just nine seconds from a tournament all-star, for runners counting towards school scoring he finished 9th.
Graduate student Colin Wallace chased Cael for the full 8-kilometers and finished 25th (29:15) as the second UBC Okanagan runner to cross the finish line. The other two runners scoring for the Heat were Joshua Tremblay who finished 40th (30:00) in exactly a half an hour, Erik Paulsen just edged out the first UBC Okanagan displacer, Mackenzie Wong with a time of 30:12. Mackenzie crossed at 30:15, they finished 42nd and 43rd respectively.
The final displacer for the Heat was Scott Lyons who places 77th amongst individuals at a time of 31:11.
In the men’s eight-kilometre race, Cégep Edouard-Montpetit’s Jérémy Briand used a strong push at the finish to win the gold medal in a time of 27:07
Briand raced past Lethbridge College Kodiaks runner, Edwin Kaitany, in the final 100-metres to secure the win.
Kaitany, who finished in 27:11, earns silver one year after winning the bronze medal in 2013. Fleming College’s Riley Hubbard-Olesky grabbed bronze with a time of 27:22.
Women 5k Run CC (Overall | School place) 17 | 14 Blackburne, Michelle UBC Okanagan 20:30 27 | 21 Stockton, Alea UBC Okanagan 20:54 35 | 29 Quibell, Shayna UBC Okanagan 21:03 39 | 33 Metro, Trisha-Lee UBC Okanagan 21:10 49 | 42 Neudorf, Julianna UBC Okanagan 21:38 50 | 43 Wentzel, Annelies UBC Okanagan 21:39 Men 8k Run CC (Overall | School place) 13 | 9 Warner, Cael UBC Okanagan 28:22 35 | 25 Wallace, Colin UBC Okanagan 29:15 52 | 40 Tremblay, Joshua UBC Okanagan 30:00 54 | 42 Paulsen, Erik UBC Okanagan 30:12 55 | 43 Wong, Mackenzie UBC Okanagan 30:15 77 | 65 Lyons, Scott UBC Okanagan 31:11
UBC Okanagan’s finishes at the CCAA national cross country championships (M | W)
2014 (7th | 5th) @ SAIT, Confederation Park, Calgary, AB
2013 (10th | 1st) @ Humber College, Humber Arboretum, Etobicoke, ON.
2012 (10th | 4th) @ Ste. Lambert, Parc Michel-Chartrand in Longueuil, QB
2011 (13th | 13th) @ Thompson Rivers, MacArthur Island Park, Kamloops, BC