Sept. 19, 2003


TUSCALOOSA, Ala. Sophomore Megan Cauble turned in the finest performance of her young career, and Stanford transfer Lindsay Hyatt debuted in strong fashion, as the University of Tennessee women's cross country team easily claimed victory at the Crimson Classic Invitational on Friday evening at Harry Pritchett Golf Course.

Second-year Head Coach J.J. Clark's squad accumulated 37 points to take top honors and hold off runner-up Mississippi State, which tallied 63 behind Tiffany McWilliams' individual championship in 17:28.07. Making the win and the margin that much more impressive was the fact that Clark opted to rest junior Brooke Novak (Kaukauna, Wis.), sophomore Carly Matthews (Winston-Salem, N.C.) and junior Elizabeth McCalley (Knoxville, Tenn.), who finished one, two and four, respectively, for the team in last weekend' season-opening Tennessee/adidas Invitational.

"It's a good sign that we can go out and win a meet while some of our individuals are not running," Clark said. "The team performed well and was very competitive, and they showed we are moving in the right direction with our training. We still have a ways to go, though, and I look for us to continue to pick up the intensity as the season progresses."

Host Alabama grabbed third place with 97 points, while UAB and Samford were fourth and fifth, respectively, at 114 and 136. The rest of the field included: Southern Mississippi (140), Ole Miss and Clayton College (214), Birmingham-Southern (249), Arkansas State (260), Alabama State (373), West Alabama (384), North Alabama (388), Jacksonville State (392) and Alabama A&M (429).



Cauble, a product of Knoxville's West High School, showed no difficulties in dealing with high humidity and temperatures in the 80s, as she crossed the finish line third overall on the 5000-meter course in 18:11.09 to pace the Lady Volunteers. An NCAA All-South Region performer in her rookie season, the second-year harrier led the UT pack for the first time as a member of the Big Orange. Her previous best position on the squad was third at the 2002 Southeastern Conference Championships.

"Megan ran exceptionally well today despite the heat and humidity," Clark said. "She did a great job getting fit over the summer, and she seems to be getting stronger as the weeks go by."

Hyatt, who hails from Auburn, Calif., wasted little time in making an impact on the program by placing second on the team and seventh overall in 18:30.59. The Placer High School graduate, who had a fine career on the course and track for Stanford, decided to attend graduate school at Tennessee and complete her final season of eligibility in Knoxville after concluding her degree in American Studies at the West Coast school. It appears her decision to move to the Volunteer State over the summer was a wise one.

"Lindsay looked super in her first race as a Lady Vol," Clark said. "I thought she ran a great second half of the race, and that was the difference. She demonstrated today that she will definitely be a contributor to this team."

Aiding the UT scoring cause was sophomore Felicia Guliford (Gallup, N.M.), who made her first appearance this season by finishing less than a second behind Hyatt in 18:31.23 to place ninth. Rounding out the scoring were sophomore Mindy Sullivan (Lubbock, Texas) in 11th at 18:41.78 and redshirt freshman Katie Flaute (Dayton, Ohio), who made her maiden run in 2003 with a time of 18:47.89 to wind up 12th.

Other finishers for the Orange and White included junior Nicole Cook (Petersburg, Va.) in 13th at 18:54.43, senior Jessica Southers (Ashland, Ky.) in 17th at 19:05.39, sophomore Rachel Zamata (Henderson, Tenn.) in 25th at 19:33.67 and senior Christy Baird (Knoxville, Tenn.) in 39th at 20:02.34.

The Lady Vols will now have two weeks to resume training before competing again at the 5K Paul Short Invitational in Bethlehem, Pa., on Oct. 4.



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