Women Cross Country to Race In Disney Classic
FORT MYERS, Fla. – Seven was the lucky number for the FGCU women’s cross country team at last week’s flrunners.com Invitational VI. The Eagles hope for more of the same when they compete in the 10th Annual Walt Disney World Cross Country Classic in Orlando on Saturday.
Seven Eagles set season-bests in last Friday’s pre-regional race at Little Everglades Ranch in Dade City, the course that will serve as host of the NCAA Division II South Region championship meet in November. The strong showing propelled FGCU to a ninth-place finish among the mix of 17 teams from NCAA Division I, II and NAIA schools competing.
Sophomore Cadie Sly (Loxahatchee, Fla.) led the charge as she posted the fourth best 5-K time in school history, finishing 29th in 20:16. Three freshman - April Ward (North Fort Myers, Fla.), Lyndsey Kelly (Cape Coral, Fla.), and Marie Scarpantonio (North Fort Myers, Fla.) ran season-bests to place in the top-75 overall.
Junior Lindsey Garven (Oviedo, Fla.), freshman Cindy Watson (Fort Myers, Fla.) and junior Lindsay Gualario (Naples, Fla.) also posted season-bests.
The Disney Classic could provide an opportunity for the Eagles an opportunity to improve on their times. Two of the three Eagles veteran runners have set career-bests at the Disney Classic.
Junior Katy Steffan (Naples, Fla.), who has battled anemia during the past three weeks, set the FGCU 5-K record with a 19:40 in this event a year ago. Senior Antoinette Savino (Largo, Fla.) posted a career-best 22:55 on the course two years ago. In addition, Sly, who transferred to FGCU this fall from Stetson, ran a season-best 19:54 in last year's Disney Classic for the Hatters.
The 5-K course is a relatively flat, fast course that incorporates sports fields, the Disney Track Complex and wooded trails. 38 schools from as far away as Texas are scheduled to compete in the event, which begins at 8:55 a.m.