Memphis, Tenn. - The William Carey University Cross Country teams opened the 2017 season with both squads competing at the Brooks Memphis Twilight Classic.


In his senior season debut, Geoffrey Kipchumba (SR/Eldoret, Kenya) controlled most of the 4 mile race from the lead pack while going on to take 3rd overall behind the top two runners from Middle Tennessee State. Kipchumba's 3rd place finish would pace the men to a 10th place finish in the team rankings. 


"I felt really comfortable throughout the race, it was good" said Kipchumba. "The course was sticky from all of the rain but overall it felt good to run early in the year."


Rounding out the top five for the men included Cooper Herrington (SO/Madison, Miss.), William Neese (SO/Lucedale, Miss.), Jacob Plocher (FR/Highland, Ill.), and Antony Kimaiyo (SR/Eldoret, Kenya). 


For the ladies, Jaden Russell (SO/Vancleave, Miss.) and Ariel Jones (JR/Slidell, La.) were able to work together throughout most of the 5k season opener finishing together at the line and leading the ladies to a 15 place finish in the team standings. 


Haley Green (JR/Biloxi, Miss.) would go on to finish 3rd for the ladies while freshmen Arnancy Arnold (FR/Brookhaven, Miss.) and Macy Glatz (FR/Morton, Ill.) rounded out the top 5. 


"Overall I was pleased with both groups tonight" said Coach Blake Hegstrom. "I don't think that times are an accurate depiction of the success markers we were looking for tonight on a wet course. Being as we are a younger group this year, I wanted to see if we could execute on a number of things tonight and then go out and compete. I thought we did a good job of that."


The Crusaders will be back in action on September 15 at the Ole Miss Rebel Invite in Oxford, MS.