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October 27, 2012

Cornell Goes 1-2-3 to Take Second-Straight Heptagonal Women's Cross Country Title

Championship Central | Final Results | Interview with Katie Kellner | Interview with Artie Smith | Highlights | Photo Gallery

PRINCETON, N.J. -- The Cornell women's cross country team took the top three spots for the first time in program history and placed its first five runners among the top-15 en route to a resounding victory in the 2012 Ivy League Heptagonal Cross Country Championships, Saturday morning at Princeton's West Windsor Fields.

Cornell earned 31 points, 60 ahead of the second-place team, Princeton. Brown and Harvard tied for third with 93 points apiece, followed by No. 23 Yale (fifth, 108), Columbia (sixth, 116), Dartmouth (seventh, 162) and Penn (eighth, 204).

The Big Red, ranked tied for seventh in the country and first in the Northeast, finished with the lowest score since Princeton tallied 15 in 2009. Cornell also recorded the highest margin of victory since Princeton won by 63 points over Columbia in 2008. The Big Red became the fourth team to go 1-2-3 in the Ivy League Championships and the first since that same 2008 Tigers team. Cornell won its second-straight title for the first time since winning three in a row from 1991-93.

Cornell senior Katie Kellner won her first career individual title with a time of 20:28.5, holding off teammates Emily Shearer and Rachel Sorna by 2.3 and 3.3 seconds, respectively. Kellner is the first individual winner from Cornell since Laura Woeller won the title in 1994. Overall, the Big Red placed four runners on the All-Ivy teams and missed out on a fifth by less than two seconds, as Caroline Kellner came in 15th-place with a time of 20:58.5.

Due in large part to the lack of snow that affected the 2011 race, Kellner's time beat the best time from last season by almost 90 seconds, as Dartmouth junior Abbey D'Agostino took the 2011 title in 21:58.2. D'Agostino was scratched from this year's race due to injury, as was last year's second-place winner, Columbia sophomore Waverly Neer.

Princeton took second thanks to three runners on the second team in seniors Greta Feldman (eighth, 20:47.8) and Abby Levene (12th, 20:55.5) and sophomore Jackie Nicholas (13th, 20:56.5). However, the Tigers did not produce a first-team All-Ivy runner for the first time since 2000.

Brown's top two runners went 4-5, as junior Heidi Caldwell crossed the line in 20:36.5, followed by senior Olivia Mickle in 20:39.0. Junior Margaret Connelly also earned first-team All-Ivy honors, placing seventh with a time of 20:44.3. Harvard's tie for third-place marked its best finish since placing second in 2009. Crimson senior Sammy Silva (20:39.8) took sixth to lead Harvard.

Yale put two on the All-Ivy second team in senior Nihal Kayali (ninth, 20:49.0) and junior Liana Epstein (11th, 20:53.5). Dartmouth's Dana Giordano was the lone freshman on either of the All-Ivy squads, coming in at No. 14 with a time of 20:56.8.

The top seven individual finishers earn All-Ivy first team honors and the eighth through 14th-place winners receive second team accolades.

Final Team Standings (Points)
1. Cornell (31)
2. Princeton (91)
3. Brown (93)
3. Harvard (93)
5. Yale (108)
6. Columbia (116)
7. Dartmouth (162)
8. Penn (204)

2012 Women's Cross Country All-Ivy
First Team
Katie Kellner, Cornell, Sr.
Emily Shearer, Cornell, Jr.
Rachel Sorna, Cornell, Jr.
Heidi Caldwell, Brown, Jr.
Olivia Mickle, Brown, Sr.
Sammy Silva, Harvard, Sr.
Margaret Connelly, Brown, Jr.

Second Team
Greta Feldman, Princeton, Sr.
Nihal Kayali, Yale, Sr.
Devin McMahon, Cornell, Jr.
Liana Epstein, Yale, Jr.
Abby Levene, Princeton, Sr.
Jackie Nicholas, Princeton, So.
Dana Giordano, Dartmouth, Fr.