Vavra proud of effort at Nationals

The Missouri Southern women’s Cross Country season has now concluded, with the Lions finishing 16th at the 2010 NCAA Division-II Cross Country National Championship meet Saturday.

“We came into the meet ranked 25th so to finish just outside the top 15, I thought was pretty good,” Head Coach Patty Vavra said.

“I was very proud of the effort the girls showed through the tough weather conditions.”

In this time of the calendar year, there is sometimes the chance that there will be nasty weather conditions, and that was just the case for the championship meet in Louisville, Ky.

According to Vavra, the Lions not only had to deal with particularly cold temepratures, but there was also some snow on the ground in Louisville.

One of the Lions’ key runners senior Victoria Kline came into the meet with a cold, but managed to have the team’s 7th best finish at the meet, with a time of 25:41.

Kline’s cold however did not stop her from receiving the very prestigious NCAA Elite 88 award.

The award is given to the top grade point average of any women’s Cross Country athlete at the finals.

“I am so very proud of Victoria,” Vavra said.

“She battled through so many obstacles this year, and in previous years, she had the determination to stay with this program for five years, it is so nice to see her reap her rewards.”

Kline’s fellow Lions were led by an underclassmen at the meet as sophomore Marlee Tegenkamp had the team’s highest finish.

Tegenkamp placed 46th with a time of 22:31. Senior Silvia Pineda placed No. 104 in a time of 23:36.

While freshman Rachel Schrader rounded out the team’s top three performances. Schrader finished 109 with at time of 23:41.

“This group did a great job coming together these last few meets, we nearly accomplished all our goals we set for ourselves this year,” Vavra said. “Overall I thought we finished the season very well.”