In their opening meet of the season Aug. 31—the Earlybird Invite in Elmhurst—the Cyclones had a good showing. The women finished fifth out of 11 teams despite the heat and humidity.
Calista Stefaniak (32nd, 17:53) led the way and was the No. 2 region finisher overall. Following her was Madison Krisch (54th, 19:05), Carmen Villarreal (65th, 19:51), Rachel Brenner (81st, 21:03), and Natalie Moreno (99th, 23:28).
"I'm pleased with how the women finished. We had three other region schools in the race, and we accomplished our goal of coming out on top even while sitting out a couple of key runners," said head Coach Dimitri Dimizas. "I think the best thing about this group right now is that there is a lot of room to improve. We have so many new collegiate runners, and it will take them a few meets to get used to this level of racing. We have a lot of inexperience, but once they learn how to race and understand when and how to make moves throughout the race they should surprise some people."