WC women 6th in OAC race, highest finish in 7 years

TWINSBURG — The Wilmington College women’s cross country team finished sixth Saturday at the 2019 Ohio Athletic Conference Championships held here at Liberty Park. The finish is the program’s best in seven seasons.

The Fightin’ Quakers tallied 175 total points as a team, finishing 22 points clear of seventh-place Heidelberg University and 68 points behind the University of Mount Union. Host John Carroll University edged out Baldwin Wallace University 41-49 to win the championship.

Wilmington’s top finisher was freshman Milena Wahl, who placed 26th with a time of 24:17.6 in the six-kilometer race. Sydney Yontz, who was once named OAC Women’s Cross Country Runner of the Week, finished in 24:27.6 and Katie Hughes ran 24:31 to earn top 32 finishes.

John Carroll had the top two runners as Syndey Jenko won the meet individually with a time of 22:28.7

Allison Helmke was the fourth Quaker to cross the finish line in 25:31.2 for 52nd place. Savannah Rhodes rounded out the scoring for Wilmington as its fifth finisher (26:57.3).

“Our women had a great race as we met our goal of finishing sixth,” WC coach Ron Combs said. “I’m excited for the direction our women are going as we are very young as a team. The experience we gained will definitely benefit us in the future.”

Hughes is a Clinton-Massie graduate and Rhodes is a Blanchester product.

Wilmington will have a week off before heading to the NCAA Division III Great Lakes Regional hosted by Calvin University in Grand Rapids, Mich. Nov. 16.