Peale, Wolverines Take Fourth Place at Big Ten Championships

Nov. 1, 2009

Site: State College, Pa. (Blue/White Golf Course)
Meet: Big Ten Championships (5,000 meters)
U-M Finish: Fourth of 11 Teams (122 points)
Top U-M Individual: Kaitlyn Peale, 4th (20:33)
Next U-M Event: Friday, Nov. 6 -- at Toledo Rocket Open (Toledo, Ohio), 4:30 p.m.

Photo Gallery

STATE COLLEGE, Pa. -- Junior/sophomore Kaitlyn Peale (Columbus, Ohio/Upper Arlington HS) claimed fourth place to lead the University of Michigan women's cross country team to a fourth-place team finish (122 points) at the Big Ten Championships on Sunday (Nov. 1) at Penn State's Blue/White Golf Course. The host Nittany Lions captured the team title with 71 points.

Peale went out with the leaders, jostling for position among the top 15 while maintaining the race's quick initial pace. The Wolverine sophomore gained ground on the frontrunners as the lead pack began to fracture around the midway point and held her position for the remainder of the race, losing a spot to Indiana's Wendi Robinson before retaking it in the final kick. Peale registered a big 6,000-meter personal best, clocking 20:33 -- a 74-second improvement on her previous best -- while her fourth-place effort was her fifth top-10 finish in as many appearances this season.

Freshmen Kaitlyn Patterson (Cadillac, Mich./Cadillac HS) and Rebecca Addison (Spring Lake, Mich./Grand Haven HS) also placed among the top 25, essentially crossing the finish line together in the 19th and 21st spots with times of 21:20 and 21:23, respectively. Freshmen Jillian Smith (Manahawkin, N.J./Southern Regional HS) and senior/junior Rachel Severin (Chelsea, Mich./Chelsea HS) finished together several meters behind, placing 38th and 40th in 21:47 and 21:49, respectively. All five of Michigan's scored runners recorded significant personal bests.

The Maize and Blue will run one final tune-up race prior to the NCAA postseason meets, heading south to Toledo, Ohio, for the Toledo Rocket Open on Friday (Nov. 6). The race is slated for a 4:30 p.m. start at the Ottawa Park Golf Course.

Team Standings

 1. Penn State       71
 2. Illinois         77
 3. Minnesota        80
 4. MICHIGAN        122
 5. Michigan State  137
 6. Iowa            150
 7. Indiana         161
 8. Ohio State      164
 9. Purdue          204
10. Wisconsin       254
11. Northwestern    326

Top 10 Individuals

 1. Bridget Franek, Penn State      20:03
 2. Angela Bizzarri, Illinois       20:10
 3. Megan Duwell, Minnesota         20:23
 4. Kaitlyn Peale, U-M              20:33
 5. Wendi Robinson, Indiana         20:37
 6. Emily MacLeod, Michigan State   20:41
 7. Kristin Sutherland, Illinois    20:41
 8. Sarah Pease, Indiana            20:50
 9. Nicole Lord, Penn State         20:52
10. Caitlyn Comfort, Wisconsin      20:54

Other Michigan Individuals

19. Kaitlyn Patterson, U-M          21:20
21. Rebecca Addison, U-M            21:23
38. Jillian Smith, U-M              21:47
40. Rachel Severin, U-M             21:49
44. Rachel White, U-M               21:52
56. Lindsey Hilton, U-M             22:15
73. Mary Grace Pellegrini, U-M      22:39
94. Melany Mioduszewski, U-M        23:42


Michigan Head Coach Mike McGuire
On Michigan's team performance ... "I was very happy with it. We were ranked fifth coming in. I thought it could go either way with Michigan State for fourth place, but we stepped up and grabbed it. We were solid, and it was a solid performance. I had seven of nine runners where this was their first Big Ten meet. Obviously, it was a good start with Kaitlyn [Peale] taking fourth, and I thought we had great performances from our two freshmen -- Kaitlyn Patterson and Rebecca Addison. So, all in all, I was very happy with the effort. I thought we gained loads from this meet -- both as we finish up this season and for the future."

U-M Junior/Sophomore Kaitlyn Peale
On her race ... "I felt pretty good, and I just held my position for most of the race. It went out really hard, about 5:12 through the first mile. I was pretty far back, but the group kept breaking up, so I worked my way up. Around the 3K, I was pretty close to the top 10, and I just stayed with them. I didn't lose any positions for the last mile."

Contact: Leah Howard (734) 763-4423