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Smith Named USA South Runner of the Year; Cross Country Teams Place Second

Lilly Smith (right) accepts the Runner of the Year award from USA South commissioner Dr. Tom Hart (left)
Lilly Smith (right) accepts the Runner of the Year award from USA South commissioner Dr. Tom Hart (left)

MARYVILLE, Tenn. -- Both Covenant cross country teams placed second at the USA South Championships on Friday in Maryville, Tenn., and senior Lilly Smith was voted as the conference's Runner of the Year.

The women's team had seven runners earn a spot on All-USA South teams with their finishes, a program record since joining the conference. On the men's side, six runners collected All-USA South accolades, also a program record.

Berea took home the team title in both races as the Scots placed runner-up for a second straight year. The Covenant women totaled 47 points, while the men had 58.

Smith, a senior from Weaverville, N.C., was voted as the conference's Runner of the Year for a second consecutive season. The senior placed second overall on Friday, but has been a dominant force on the trails all season long. Smith has accumulated four individual titles during the year and was a USA South Runner of the Week four times. On Friday, Smith finished second with a 6k time of 23:10.53 to earn first team All-USA South. Smith was also Covenant's representative on the All-Sportsmanship team.

Maggie Henry set a personal record in the 6k with her time of 24:58.84, good for ninth overall and a second team All-USA South honor. Alexandra May also set a career-best in the 6k with her mark of 25:00.54 to place 10th and garner All-USA South second team honors. Hannah Samuels (25:07.24) and Michelann Settle (25:13.84) finished 12th and 14th, respectively, to earn their spots on the second team All-USA South list.

Rounding out the top seven finishers for the Scots was Anna Danek and her personal best time of 25:37.94 to place 17th, and Ashleigh Baker's career-best time of 26:16.64 to finish 26th. Danek was a third team All-USA South honoree, while Baker earned honorable mention.

On the men's side, six runners collected All-USA South honors led by Nate Collins' fifth place finish. Collins completed the 8k course in a time of 27:22.93 to finish fifth and garner a spot on the All-USA South first team. 

The Scots had three runners on the second team All-USA South performance list. Matthew Tueller placed 10th overall at 27:59.13, while Jonathan George (28:09.03) and Micaiah Allison (28:09.23) were neck-and-neck before finishing 13th and 14th, respectively. Caleb Aikens earned third team honors with his run of 28:11.33 that placed him 16th in the field, while Matt Seitz was 17th at 28:11.43 to also earn a third team accolade. Seitz was also Covenant's representative on the All-Sportsmanship team.

Leif Le Mahieu completed the top seven finishers for the Scots as he came in 27th overall with a time of 29:06.33.

Women's Results (2nd - 47 points)
2nd - Lilly Smith - 23:10.53 - 1st team All-USA South
9th - Maggie Henry - 24:58.84 (PR) - 2nd team All-USA South
10th - Alexandra May - 25:00.54 (PR) - 2nd team All-USA South
12th - Hannah Samuels - 25:07.24 - 2nd team All-USA South
14th - Michelann Settle - 25:13.84 - 2nd team All-USA South
17th - Anna Danek - 25:37.94 (PR) - 3rd team All-USA South
26th - Ashleigh Baker - 26:16.64 (PR) - HM All-USA South

Men's Results (2nd - 58 points)
5th - Nate Collins - 27:22.93 - 1st team All-USA South
10th - Matthew Tueller - 27:59.13 - 2nd team All-USA South
13th - Jonathan George - 28:09.03 - 2nd team All-USA South
14th - Micaiah Allison - 28:09.23 - 2nd team All-USA South
16th - Caleb Aikens - 28:11.33 - 3rd team All-USA South
17th - Matt Seitz - 28:11.43 - 3rd team All-USA South
27th - Leif Le Mahieu - 29:06.33

UP NEXT

Covenant will have two weeks off before competing in the NCAA South/Southeast Region meet on Saturday, Nov. 10 in Mount Berry, Ga.

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