Runners break records at UCM Mule Run

Story by Megan Henry

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Women’s 4,000-meter run

Lauren Jaqua – Third, 14:49

Kerry Kurta – 13th, 15:21

Megan Rosa – 14th, 15:26

Ashley McBride – 16th, 15:32

Jillian Benson – 17th, 15:36

Rachel Ash – 28th, 15:55

Shelby Stephens – 53rd, 16:47

Amanda Moody – 70th, 17:17

Joeanna Feliciano – 82nd, 17:37

Aadrian Mcollum – 110th, 19:27

Men’s 6,400-meter run

Vincent Tadokoro – 19th, 21:53

Corey Matteson – 26th, 22:02

Jamie Sturery – 45th, 22:55

Cooper Clark – 52nd, 23:04

Carter Breithaupt – 61st, 23:22

Andrew Dare – 62nd, 23:23

Andrew Heim – 63rd, 23:23

Tosh Mihesuah – 64th, 23:23

Ulrich Johanning – 106th, 25:28

The Baker University women’s cross country team broke multiple records at the University of Central Missouri’s Mule Run on Saturday.

Two of them belonged to junior Kerry Kurta and senior Lauren Jaqua. Jaqua broke Baker’s 4,000-meter run record with a time of 14:49, which earned her a third-place finish at the meet. For her performance, Jaqua earned the Heart of America Athletic Conference runner of the week award.

Kurta finished in 13th place and broke a personal record with a time of 15:21.

“I was pretty excited about how my last race went,” Kurta said. “The course was pretty flat and really fun to race on.”

The Baker women’s cross country team finished second out of 12 teams, falling only behind Columbia College. Seniors Megan Rosa and Ashley McBride and freshman Jillian Benson also joined Jaqua and Kurta in the top 20 of the race.

On the men’s side, junior Vincent Tadokoro finished the 6,400-meter run in 19th place with a time of 21:53. Freshman Corey Matteson followed behind him in 26th place.

“I feel pretty great about (the results),” Matteson said. “We have a great team, and I’m hoping to get faster as the season progresses.”

Freshman Andrew Dare, on the other hand, was unhappy with his performance.

“I didn’t feel like I had much energy,” Dare said. “I just felt off. People have bad races every once in a while.”

Both the men’s and women’s team have a large freshman class, and Dare sees his class comparable to last season’s senior class. This group also had a large freshman class and improved over time, becoming a nationally ranked program by the time they were upperclassmen.

“I think it’s good because as a team we rely on freshmen, so in the future the team will be good as we grow and gain experience,” Dare said. “Each year we (will) get better and better.”

On the women’s side, the freshmen make up approximately half of the team.

“The freshmen this year are awesome,” Kurta said. “Every one of them just keep making improvements from week to week and they all show a lot of potential and motivation to just keep getting faster, so that’s really exciting.”

The next meet will be the Southern Stampede on Saturday in Joplin, Mo. Each race, the team works toward bettering its times in preparation for conference competition.

“This season the ultimate goal for our team is definitely to win conference so we can compete at the national meet,” Kurta said.