Sept. 17, 2011
By Eric Trainer, Associate Director of Media Relations
MARYVILLE, Tenn. -- Lady Vol Brittany Sheffeycaptured her first career victory and Vol Chris Bodary posted his second runner-up finish this season, as the Big Orange cross country teams competed Saturday morning in the Tennessee Invitational at Lambert Acres Golf Club.
Kentucky prevailed in the team races, winning the men's 8000-meter competition with a score of 23 points to 36 for the UT men. The UK women, meanwhile, picked up a first-place outcome with 26 points to the Lady Vols' 33 on the 5000-meter women's layout.
Sheffey, a senior from Bellport, N.Y., led from start to finish en route to her first collegiate cross country win, paced the team for the second time this season and contributed to UT's scoring tally for the 20th-consecutive race in her career. She did so with a readout of 17 minutes, 43.46 seconds that ranks as the fifth-fastest registered by a Lady Vol on the 5K course at Lambert Acres. That mark propelled her across the finish line nearly 30 seconds ahead of the runner-up time of 18:13.22, registered by Kentucky junior Chelsea Oswald.
"Brittany was expected to run well, and she went out and did that for us today," UT Director of Track & Field/Cross Country J.J. Clarksaid. "It's always good to do what you are expected to do, and it was nice to see her come out of the race with her first win in cross country."
Making her season debut, senior Chanelle Priceposted an impressive third-place result for the home team. Known for her prowess on the oval, the two-time SEC 800m champ rolled to a career-best 18:31.13 clocking on the trail Saturday to aid the cause for the Big Orange.
Junior Ramzee Fondren, who kept pace early with a lead pack that included teammates Sheffey and Price, had easily the finest result of her UT cross country tenure. Despite dropping off the lead pace as the race wore on, she was able to hold on just enough to deliver the Lady Vols their third top-10 finisher of the race, hitting the chute at 18:45.58 to snare sixth place.
Freshman Amirah Johnson and junior Kelsey Kanecounted toward the team total for the second time this season. Johnson did so by covering the distance in 19:29.26 to place 11th, while Kane finished right behind her in 12th at 19:30.44. That gave the Lady Vols a one-through-five runner time spread of one minute, 46.98 seconds.
Other finishers for the Lady Vols included senior Elizabeth Altizer in 14th (13th scorer) at 20:21.90, junior Chelsea Knotts in 15th (14th) at 20:26.24, sophomore Patavia Lowery in 16th at 20:33.94 and senior Elizabeth Tillerin 18th at 20:47.51.
Bodary, a senior from Downingtown, Pa., was thwarted from winning a men's individual crown for the second straight meet by Kentucky's Luis Orta, who prevailed in 25:07.34 on a course that will be used later this season for the SEC Championships. A runner-up to Orta at the Belmont-VU Opener on Sept. 2, Bodary grabbed second this time at the Tennessee Invitational in 25:24.52.
It wasn't for a lack of effort, as Bodary and rookie teammate Austin Whitelaw joined Orta in setting the pace for the first three miles. Bodary and Whitelaw actually were running one-two through the two- and three-mile marks, at splits of 10:07 and 15:23, respectively, before Orta pushed the tempo, assumed the lead at the four-mile point and brought it on home for the triumph.
Whitelaw, who was UT's fifth finisher two weekends ago, scored in the No. 2 slot in his second college meet, taking third overall in 25:32.32. Senior Tom Gilmartin and freshman Jeremy Dickie counted toward the Vol team total for the second time in 2011, with Gilmartin crossing the line ninth in 26:18.01 and Dickie coming home 10th in 26:23.83.
Sophomore Daniel Tobin bounced back from a tough race in the season-opener to score in the fifth position for Tennessee, placing 12th overall in 26:37.60. His performance helped UT post a one-through-five runner spread of one minute, 13.08 seconds.
Also competing but not counting toward the team scoring were sophomore Stephen Derlath in 14th (13th scorer) in 26:49.32, freshman J.R. Creekmore in 16th (14th) at 26:59.92 and sophomore Alex McCandless in 17th at 27:18.02.
"I thought Chris Bodary and Austin Whitelaw looked good for this time of the year," Clark said. "I think the men's team is in a position to do well, and the women's team showed progress from the last meet. These are the things we are looking for and aiming to do. For us to get better and better as the season progresses is my objective.
"We have some room to grow, and we will. I just need to continue to see progression, and I did today. We're just happy to be healthy and moving forward. We'll insert people every week as time goes along, and we'll see what happens."
The Vols and Lady Vols are off next weekend before resuming competition on Sept. 30 at the Brooks Paul Short Run in Bethlehem, Pa.
WOMEN'S TEAM RESULTS:1. Kentucky, 26; 2. Tennessee, 33
LADY VOL INDIVIDUAL RESULTS: 1. Brittany Sheffey, 17:43.46; 3. Chanelle Price, 18:31.13; 6. Ramzee Fondren, 18:45.58; 11. Amirah Johnson, 19:29.26; 12. Kelsey Kane, 19:30.44; 14. (13.) Elizabeth Altizer, 20:21.90; 15. (14.) Chelsea Knotts, 20:26.24; 16. Patavia Lowery, 20:33.94; 18. Elizabeth Tiller, 20:47.51
MEN'S TEAM RESULTS:1. Kentucky, 23; 2. Tennessee, 36
VOL INDIVIDUAL RESULTS: 2. Chris Bodary, 25:24.52; 3. Austin Whitelaw, 25:32.32; 9. Tom Gilmartin, 26:18.01; 10. Jeremy Dickie, 26:23.83; 12. Daniel Tobin, 26:37.60; 14. (13.) Stephen Derlath, 26:49.32; 16. (14.) J.R. Creekmore, 26:59.92; 17. Alex McCandless, 27:18.02