FORT BENNING, Ga. – Finishing top two in all four regular-season races, the Augusta University women's cross country team is prepared for the postseason that starts Saturday, Oct. 21 with the Peach Belt Conference Championships in Fort Benning, Ga. Columbus State University will host the meet at the Fort Benning Army Base on Stewart-Watson Field.
The championship will be contested over a 5k course, the first time the PBC has held a 5k in the championship since 2008. The women will run first on Saturday morning at 9:00 am, the men will follow at 10:15. Admittance to the race is free, but those wishing to attend need to allow time to pass through security at Fort Benning. More information about gaining access to the base, directions and maps can be found here.
2017 PBC Championship
• Oct. 21, 2017
• Fort Benning Army Base, Fort Benning, Ga. - Hosted by Columbus State
• Women's 6K @ 9:00 a.m. / Men's 10K @ 10:15 a.m.
• All 11 women's teams and eight men's teams will compete
The Jaguar women are ranked No. 6 in the NCAA Southeast Region and have one victory and three runner-up finished for the regular-season. Augusta finished runner-up at the at the Eye Opener Invitational Sept. 1, owned their home meet at the Jaguar XC Invitational Sept. 9, took second of 19 teams at the Wingate Bulldog Stampede Sept. 23, and placed second at the Bobcat Invitational Oct. 6 to end the regular-season.
The Augusta women carded third at last year's PBC finale and they have finished runner-up three times, with the last in 2010. They are searching for their first PBC Championship in school history. Senior Lara Way finished in fifth at the Bobcat while freshman Micah Weathers was sixth at the Bulldog Stampede and first at the Jaguar XC Invitational.
Georgia College has finished in second or third in all four regular-season events. The Bobcats will also be searching for their first PBC title and will look to senior Katherine Yost to set the pace. A two-time PBC Runner of the Week, Yost has the top two 6k times in the Peach Belt this season and the second-fastest 5k time.
Flagler has finished in the top five of every regular-season race and were second at the Furman/ Gene Mullin Invitational and third at Florida Tech. Junior Heloise Duffie de Tassigny has run three 5k races this year and the three times are among the top nine fastest in the league this year.
UNC Pembroke finished second at the Queens Twilight and were fifth at Florida State. The Braves have also finished in the top five at the PBC Championships for the last seven years in a row.
Clayton State finished in second place at the Jaguar Invitational and the Cougar Invitational at Fort Benning. Lakers junior Carla Catala Martin has been the top finisher at all four events this year, coming in second at the Cougar Invitational with the fifth-fastest 5k time in the PBC this year.
Host Columbus State will be looking for their first championship in seven years after completing a run of six straight titles from 2005-10. The Cougars have a pair of top-four finishes this season including third at the Cougar Invitational at Fort Benning and fourth at the JSU Struts Season Opener.
Francis Marion began the 2017 season with a victory at the Carolina Challenge and were fourth at the Koala Classic, their most recent run. Sophomore Alison Filer has been the top Patriot finisher at all four events, coming in second at the Carolina Challenge.
Georgia Southwestern finished third at the Middle Georgia State Invitational and were sixth at the Cougar Invitational. Ashleigh Owens has led the Hurricanes in all four events, finishing second at Middle Georgia and 12th at the Cougar Invite.
USC Aiken was third at their own Pacer Invitational and fourth at the S.C. State Invitational. Junior Bethany Fordham has been the top Pacer in each race, finishing seventh at S.C. State and 14th at the Jaguar Invitational.
Lander returned to the cross country course this season for the first time since 2008. The Bearcats have run partial teams at several events, but did finish in 10th place at the Koala Classic in their last outing.
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