NEW BRITAIN, Conn. – A top 10 finish by sophomore Jane Burgoyne (Glen Rock, N.J./Glen Rock) and an overwhelming personal best time for classmate Valentina Gonzalez (Wood-Ridge, N.J./Wood-Ridge) highlighted Felician University's trip to the 15th Annual Ted Owen Women's Cross-Country Invitational, hosted by Central Connecticut State University on Saturday afternoon at Stanley Quarter Park.
Felician was ending a three-week layoff with its participation in the meet, which was attended by 11 Division-I schools, three Division-II institutions and a junior college. While all entrants ran together, the D-I teams were scored separately from their small-college counterparts.
Burgoyne traversed the 5,000-meter course in 21 minutes, 56 seconds. She finished ninth out of the 31 members of the small-college contingent to lead the Golden Falcons' pack.
Gonzalez ended up in 18th place. Her time of 23:17 was her lifetime best in a 5K cross-country meet by 42 seconds, and bettered by 1:06 her performance in Felician's only other race this season.
Felician senior Kelly Murphy (Cinnaminson, N.J./Cinnaminson) ran a 25:37 to finish 24th. The Golden Falcons' final two scoring slots were claimed by freshmen making their collegiate debuts. Vanessa Saiboo (Jersey City, N.J./County Prep) was 27th in 27:22, followed by Kayla Hightower (Camden, N.J./Camden) in 28th (28:23).
Felician finished in fourth place out of the complete small-college squads. The University of New Haven won the meet, placing its seven official entrants among the top 15. Monroe College was the runner-up, followed by Southern Connecticut State University.
New Haven junior Nicole Maliborska was the individual champion with a time of 18:53.
On the Division-I side, Sacred Heart University comfortably won the title, 24-61, over second-place Saint Francis (Pa.) University. Sacred Heart senior Kate Svensen was the first to cross the finish line. Her time of 18:11 was seven seconds faster than teammate Tara Connelly.