Senior Stacy Hague finished first for the Illini at the Big Ten Championships.
Oct. 30, 2011
URBANA, Ill. - Senior Stacy Hague led the Illini and improved her season-best finish as the Fighting Illini finished 12th at the Big Ten Championships at the Arboretum, the home course for the Orange and Blue on Sunday.
"It's a very disappointing finish," cross country head coach Jeremy Rasmussen said. "I think the only positive we can have is that the split between our first and last was 30 seconds. That's a good thing, however when your first person is 74th overall, it's just not good enough. I don't know if it was the hype of the meet or the pressure of being at home and trying to run well in front of the crowd, but it's completely unacceptable."
Hague turned in the best finish of the year, leading the Illini and finishing the 6K course with a time of 22:04. Sophomore Meghan Frigo (22:10) finished second on the team and 78th overall, beating her previous finish at the conference meet last year by 11 spots.
"I am proud of Stacy's performance today," Rasmussen said. "She has continued to get better and better every single race throughout the course of this year."
In her conference race debut, Colette Falsey finished third for the team and 80th overall with a time of 22:21, just three seconds behind the freshman's personal best. Rounding out the scoring for the Illini were junior Courtney Yaeger who crossed the finish line with a time of 22:23 and freshman Britten Petrey who finished fifth for Illinois with a time of 22:33.
"I think we settled a little too much," Hague said. "For the first mile we were close together but then we got trapped in and then got comfortable with a pace that was a little slower than what we wanted. It's disappointing we lost, but we're a young team and have a lot of talent. We need to be patient and learn from our races."
Penn State senior Caitlin Lane, who clocked a time of 19:58, won the race and edged out runner-up Caitlin Comfort (20:12) of Wisconsin. Michigan State won the team title for the second consecutive year with 55 points. Michigan came in second with 61 points, followed by Penn State with 71 total tallies.
The Illini take two weeks off before heading to DeKalb, Ill., for the NCAA Midwest Regional Championships on Saturday, Nov. 12 at 11 a.m. CT.