CWRU soccer teams open UAA competition with a bang

Women’s soccer extends win streak to 9


Courtesy of CWRU Athletics

Fourth-year midfielder Aniya Hartzler capitalized on a free kick to net the game-winning goal against Brandeis.

Puneet Bansal, Sports Editor

After strong performances at the All-Ohio Twilight Championships and the Spartan Invitational in mid-September, the Case Western Reserve University cross country teams both earned podium finishes at the Mike Woods Invitational on Oct. 1.

On Sept. 16, CWRU divided their rosters for the Spartan Invitational, hosted by Michigan State University in East Lansing, Michigan and for the All-Ohio Championships in Cedarville, Ohio.

At the Spartan Invitational, the men’s team was led by fourth-year Robert St. Clair who placed 35th out of 246 in the 8K race with a time of 25:32.43. Other notable finishes were fourth-year Jack Begley, who came in 42nd (25:40.64), second-year Aidan Nathan, who finished 57th (25:56.35), third-year Stephen Henry, who took 86th (career-best 26:35.12) and fourth-year Liam O’Reilly, who earned 102st place (26:46.20). The Spartans placed 10th out of 18 teams overall.

At the All-Ohio Championships, graduate student Anthony Hart was the first CWRU runner to cross the finish line with a time of 26:35.5 in the 8K distance, taking 100th out of 436 and 24th out of the 180 Division III runners. Rounding out the top five CWRU finishers were third-year Arjun Thillairajah in 106th place (26:40.2), second-year Hans Holst in 111th (26:43.1), first-year Ben Smith in 122nd (26:51.1) and first-year Danny Becker in 134th (26:59.8). The Spartans placed 12th out of 29 teams and third out of the 14 DIII teams.

The women’s team at the Spartan Invitational was led by first-year Ashley Novak, who took 62nd out of 217 runners in the 6K race with a time of 23:11.57. Fourth-year Julia Kocherzat followed in 105th (24:05.04) alongside third-year Sierra Williams for 111th (24:12.94). Third-year Grace Jackson earned 120th place (career-best 24:25.37) and fourth-year Catherine Phillips came in 126th (24:35.94) to finish off the scoring athletes. The team posted a 14th place finish out of 19 teams.

CWRU finished 10th out of 33 teams at the All-Ohio Championships, and were third out of 15 DIII teams. First-year Lauren Iagnemma finished the 5K distance with a time of 19:05.2, taking 49th out of 334 overall and 11th out of the 136 DIII competitors. The other top five finishers were first-year Julia Hluck, who followed in 70th (19:29.7), first-year Ayla Grabenbauer, who came in 81st (19:36.9), first-year Anna Avila, who earned 84th (19:36.9) and third-year Jessica Kwasny, who came in 145th (20:37.9).

On Saturday, Oct. 1, the men’s team shined at the Mike Woods Invitational and brought home a first place overall finish. Begley led the way with a third-place finish overall out of the 365 runners in the 8K (24:49.3). Nathan followed in sixth place with a career-best time of 25:06.1 while St. Clair came just after in seventh (25:08.3). Fourth-year Joe Jaster and O’Reilly were the other two top five Spartan finishers. Both posted career-best times, finishing 19th (25:33.4) and 27th (25:47.9), respectively.

CWRU owned three of the top 10 finishes and finished with a score of 62, placing ahead of No. 19 Geneseo (68 points), Middlebury College (95 points), Washington and Lee College (154 points) and Franklin Pierce University (167 points). Franklin Pierce’s Wondu Summa won the race with a time of 24:40.7.

The women’s team also brought in a strong overall performance led by Iagnemma and Novak. Iagnemma was the first Spartan finisher, placing 11th out of 274 with a time of 22:50.4 for the 6K race—the fastest of any Spartan this season. Novak recorded her season-best mark of 23:11.0, finishing 17th. Jackson came in 29th (career-best 23:33.4), Grabenbauer placed 33rd (23:39.2) and Kocherzat took 36th (23:41.0).

The Spartans earned 96 points to take third place overall, with No. 1 Geneseo taking the team title with a score of 15 and No. 24 Dickinson College finishing second with 85 points. Middlebury finished fourth (109 points) while Allegheny College took fifth (136 points).

Begley and Iagnemma were named the Spartan Club Athletes of the Week for their top performances.

CWRU will host the Alumni Race at the Squire Valleevue Farm in Hunting Valley, Ohio on Oct. 8. The following weekend, the teams will travel to Oberlin, Ohio for the Oberlin Inter-regional Rumble on Oct. 15.