After a five year absence, the GPRC Wolves Women’s XC Running Team returned to the podium on Saturday at the 2019 ACAC Cross Country Running Championships in Calgary. Scoring 66 points, the GPRC women won the bronze medal behind the top-two ranked college xc running teams in the country Lethbridge College (gold) and Red Deer College (silver)
The GPRC ladies were led by a 4th place individual finish from third-year runner Anna van der Giessen. After finishing 15th in last year’s ACAC Championships, van der Giessen has had a breakthrough season this fall, recording a number of top- five placings in ACAC races. On Saturday, she started strong, hung in with the leaders for most of the race, and remained in individual medal contention until 200m to go.
For her efforts, van der Gieissen named to the 2019 ACAC XC Running All Conference Team.
Taryn Kolesch also had a strong run, recording a 17th place finish. Teammates Maria Houle (20th), Kailey Bratland (25th), Lydia Steinke (26th ), and Brittany Duval (27th) followed closely. Other Wolves finishers included Krista Frey (32nd) and Elizabeth Rojas (44th).
The Wolves Men’s team finished equal to their pre-meet provincial ranking: 5th. Individually, team captain Hayden Hollowell struggled with a breathing issue and faded to a 22nd place finish. However, Hollowell’s team mates employed a strong pack running strategy and recorded solid individual finishes: Chris Nelissen (18th), Jordan Lundstrom (19th), Taylor Hudak (20th), Adam Wangler (23rd), and Tairas Fournier (35th).
The Wolves runners wrap up their season in two weeks when they host the 2019 CCAA National Cross Country Running Championships at home in Grande Prairie. Two hundred college runners from Alberta, Ontario, and Quebec will take part in the race through Muskoseepi Park.
Full results are posted here.