PELLA, Iowa – Two years ago the Simpson women's cross country team finished second to last in the NCAA regional race.
Looking ahead two years it wouldn't seem likely that the Storm would improve roughly 13 spots and into the higher half of the field.
But, Simpson did – placing 15th in the field of 30 at the NCAA Regional Championship on Saturday, being led by junior Sadie Timms who placed 54th out of 205 runners at Central College's 6K course.
"It was a great team race for our women," head coach Heath Moenck said. "Two years ago we finished second to last and to finish in the top half is a great accomplishment."
Timms completed the course in 23:58.9, finishing the season with consecutive strong races.
Each squad had seven runners and the Storm would have four total place in the top 100.
Courtney Neuendorf was next in line for Simpson, running a 24:36.0 to take 90th. Senior Stacie Ahlers was literally just behind her teammate, taking 91st as she finished a mere two-tenths of a second slower than Neuendorf.
Briana McCloskey rounded out Simpson's top-100 performers, crossing the line in 24:53.6 at 99th.
Other Simpson Results:
110th – Sr. Bree Gaster: 25:04.4
140th- Jr. Jessica Gronke: 25:45.9
Simpson was without one of its top runners in junior-transfer Rebecca Diemer, who had to withdraw due to illness, although Diemer showed impressive results and potential in 2015.
Simpson placed just ahead of rival Central College who finished 16th, and fourth overall amongst Iowa Conference schools.
Top 5 Teams:
1. St. Thomas (Minn.)
3. St. Olaf
Simpson finished ahead of four Iowa Conference schools, including Buena Vista (26th), Dubuque (25th), Coe (17th) and Central (16th).
"It was nice to be able to finish this way," Moenck said. "I'm really proud of our girls for working hard and making strides all year long, and ultimately all of the credit goes to them for that."