MILLEDGEVILLE, Ga. – Junior Hailey Hendry provided the low stick with a third-place finish and her Florida State teammates packed up nicely behind her at Saturday’s Bobcat Invitational, leading the Seminoles to victory over a 19-team field.
Hendry was the first Nole across the Council Farms Course finish line, covering 6,000 meters in 22:14.9, less than a second off her personal best at that distance. Freshman Ella Swigler was sixth overall (22:48.7), followed by the trio of sophomore Sarah Myers (23:02.4), freshman Sarah Parrish (23:06.2) and sophomore Kate Bernicke (23:18.5) in finishing positions 10-12.
With Micaela Torres (15th, 23:26.0) and Katie Kuhn (17th, 23:35.0) providing displacement points, the Noles’ developmental squad squeezed out a 42-54 victory over runner-up Alabama-Hunstville.
FSU’s impressive 1:04 split – the margin between the Noles’ first and fifth runners – was tops in the field.
In all, 13 of 16 Seminoles competing posted personal-best times in the event, hosted by Georgia College & State University. The 19-team field was comprised almost entirely of NCAA Division II programs, competing on a course which has served as host of conference and region meets.
FSU’s chase pack of Myers, Parrish and Bernicke – all of whom recorded personal-bests – were decisive in the win as they finished in front of Alabama-Huntsville’s Nos. 4-5 scorers, as did Torres and Kuhn. The Chargers, a perennial NCAA Division II Championships qualifier, came into the meet ranked No. 2 in the D2 South Region.
Of the 16 Seminole competitors, 15 were competing for the first time since the Sept. 22 Mountain Dew Invitational as a result of last week’s cancellation of the FSU Invitational due to Hurricane Michael. Seven of those were competing over 6,000 meters for the first time.