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Youth movement leads women's cross at Augie

Youth movement leads women's cross at Augie

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. – The Simpson women's cross country team opened the season with a solid performance at the Augustana Twilight Invitational on Friday night.

The three-mile race was run under the lights at Yankton Trails on a one-mile loop and featured a stacked field, including teams from Division I and II.

Simpson – which was scheduled to open the season the previous week but had its home meet cancelled – placed 12th of 19 teams.

The Storm's freshmen dominated the top seven, taking five spots. Freshman Jessie Eyerly was the top finisher in 76th (19:00.90), followed by sophomore RaeLea Jones in 80th (19:05.38).

The three, four and five finishers were also rookies.

"We're thrilled with the way we started off our season," head coach Heath Moenck said. "Losing only one senior and adding nine new freshmen, we knew we would be a much improved team from a year ago. I'm pleased with how our freshman handled themselves in their first college meet."

First years Erin Boggess (82nd, 19:05.95), Jessica Lamb (83rd, 19:06.83) and Jessica Gronke (101st, 19:26.35) filled the No. 3-5 spots. Breanna Gaster (102nd, 19:26.64) and Briana McCloskey (19:36.26) rounded out the top seven.

Next up for the Storm is a trip to the Buena Vista Invitational on Sept. 20.