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Cross Country Teams Sweep Mountaintop Invitationals

Lilly Smith (left), Nate Collins (right) (photo credits: Nina Grauley/Sports Information)
Lilly Smith (left), Nate Collins (right) (photo credits: Nina Grauley/Sports Information)

LOOKOUT MOUNTAIN -- The Covenant cross country teams opened the season on Friday evening by sweeping the Mountaintop Invitational on Lookout Mountain. Both teams garnered team titles, while Lilly Smith was the individual champion on the women's side and Nate Collins the winner on the men's side.

It is the fifth time in the six years of the current event that both Covenant teams have taken first. It was the fourth time that a Covenant has had the individual champion in the women's race, and the third time the Scots have had the men's champion.

Smith put on an impressive display as she set a course and program-record in the two-mile run with a time of 12:42.68 to win over almost 13 seconds. Smith's time was nearly 24 seconds better than the previous course record, set in 2014 by Covenant's Beth Burgess.

However, Smith was just the tip of the iceberg for the Scots. Covenant ended up with a perfect team score (15 points) as it had all five top finishers counting towards team points. S.K. Lipperd was second with a time of 12:55.5, while Michelann Settle was third at 13:04.93. Hannah Samuels came in fourth at 13:30.42. Maggie Henry was sixth overall at 13:38.56, but was fifth for team points.

Anna Danek also placed within the top 10 as she finished 10th at 14:08.98. Caroline Pepper rounded out the top seven finishers for the Scots by placing 17th at 15:00.57.

Covenant finished first over Sewanee (second), Maryville (third), and Agnes Scott (fourth).

Collins was the catalyst for the men's team. The freshman made his collegiate debut by running a 17:09.42 in the 5k to take first place. Matthew Tueller was second at 17:22.84, while Matthew Broussard was fourth with his time of 17:40.09. Matt Seitz (17:50.42) placed sixth, Micaiah Allison (18:03.67) was seventh, and Benjamin Jones (18:14.98) was 10th to round out the Covenant runners in the top 10.

Jonathan George came in 12th at 18:35.94 and Sam Pierce was not far behind at 18:39.14 to finish 13th.

Covenant's 21 team points bested Sewanee for the team title. Cleveland State and Maryville rounded out the four-team field.

Women's Results (top 7 finishers):
1st - Lilly Smith - 12:42.68
2nd - S.K. Lipperd - 12:55.50
3rd - Michelann Settle - 13:04.93
4th - Hannah Samuels - 13:30.42
6th - Maggie Henry - 13:38.56
10th - Anna Danek - 14:08.98
17th - Caroline Pepper - 15:00.57

Men's Results (top 7 finishers):
1st - Nate Collins - 17:09.42
2nd - Matthew Tueller - 17:22.84
4th - Matthew Broussard - 17:40.09
6th - Matt Seitz - 17:50.42
8th - Micaiah Allison - 18:03.67
10th - Benjamin Jones - 18:14.98
12th - Jonathan George - 18:35.94


Covenant will compete in the Huntingdon Invitational on Saturday, Sept. 8 in Grady, Ala.


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