Keydets Shine at SoCon Championship Races
Courtesy: Southern Conference

JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. – Heading into the weekend healthy and with great confidence following recent meet results, the VMI cross country teams earned strong placements and finish times at the Southern Conference Championship meet contested Saturday morning in Johnson City, Tennessee.

 

The VMI men placed fourth overall in an 8K race with 106 points while the VMI women came in eighth place with 221 points. The Furman men’s and women’s teams won the respective races for the seventh year in a row.

 

Jahanzib Shahbaz earned First Team All-Southern Conference honors by placing seventh overall in 25:35 for the final spot on the first team.  Junior Gavin Jenkins also had an excellent performance by earning Second Team All-SoCon honors with his 13th-place mark of 26:14. The duo played a heavy role in the men’s team scoring 63 points fewer than they did a year ago as the 2018 squad came in fifth place with 169 points.

 

With the honor, Shahbaz became the first VMI runner to earn First Team All-Southern Conference honors since VMI rejoined the league in 2014. Freshmen Jonathan Krone and Dennison Kelly earned SoCon All-Freshman team marks with their respective 30th and 35th-place finishes Saturday

 

“It was the first time we’ve had a first team all-conference runner since I’ve been here, so it’s very exciting that Jahanzib ran so well today,” said VMI head coach Drew Ludtke. “Gavin also ran an excellent race today and made a huge impact on the outcome for our team. It was also the first time we’ve had two named to the All-Freshman team so the future is bright for the program. Justin Adams also ran his best race ever in his final conference meet. He was our only senior on the men’s side.”

 

Senior Logan Luckett led the way for the VMI women by placing 19th overall in 19:10 a little before junior Anna Armfield came in 30th in 19:35. Sara Belamarich and freshmen Tamara Washington and Taylor Rice also scored team points for the Keydets.

“Luckett ran a great final race of her career,” Ludtke said. “She has been an incredible member of the team these past four years and a great representative of the program.”

Emily Wells, Isabela Melendez, Raquel Janes and Brittany Szczepanik also competed for the Keydets.

 

Men’s Team Scores
1. Furman – 21
2. ETSU – 56
3. Samford – 92
4. VMI – 106
5. UNCG – 127
6. Chattanooga – 166
7. Mercer - 182
8. Western Carolina – 224
9. Wofford – 246
10. The Citadel – 285

Women’s Team Scores
1. Furman – 20
2. Samford – 86
3. UNCG – 91
4. ETSU – 115
5. Wofford – 139
6. Chattanooga – 158
7. Western Carolina – 184
8. VMI – 221
9. Mercer – 224
10. The Citadel – 247

 

VMI Men’s Cross Country – 8K – 4th Place – 106 Points

7 - Jahanzib Shahbaz – 25:35.45

13 – Gavin Jenkins – 26:14.71

26 – Justin Adams – 26:58.21

30 – Jonathon Krone – 27:14.17

34 – Carlos Fernandes – 27:30.30

35 – Dennison Kelly – 27:30.64

39 – Walt Kitson  - 27:39.47

44 – Trent Whittaker – 27:50.08

63 – Andre Jordan – 28:52.98

 

VMI Women’s Cross Country – 5K – 8th Place – 221 Points

19 – Logan Luckett – 19:10.46

30 – Anna Armfield – 19:35.39

58 – Sara Belamarich – 20:35.83

66 – Tamara Washington – 21:13.36

73 – Taylor Rice – 22:16.76

76 – Emily Wells – 22:45.50

77 – Isabela Melendez – 23:03.15

79 – Raquel Janes – 23:53.89

80 – Brittany Szczepanik – 24:25.01

 

 

 

Men’s First-Team All-SoCon
1. Ryan Adams, Furman
2. Daniel Bernal, Furman
3. Ben Varghese, ETSU
4. Cameron Ponder, Furman
5. David Ahlmeyer, Furman
6. Dillon Dean, Samford
7. Jahanzib Shahbaz, VMI

Women’s First-Team All-SoCon
1. Hannah Steelman, Wofford
2. Gabrielle Jennings, Furman
3. Savannah Carnahan, Furman
4. Kristlin Gear, Furman
5. Emma Grace Hurley, Furman
6. Grace Dwyer, Furman
7. Mary Grace Strozier, Samford

Men’s Second-Team All-SoCon
8. Adam Bradtmueller, ETSU
9. Ares Reading, Furman
10. Alex Roy, UNCG
11. Trent Mandato, Furman
12. Ben Garner, Samford
13. Gavin Jenkins, VMI
14. Noah Charles, ETSU

Women’s Second-Team All-SoCon
8. Emily Lane, Furman
9. Emma Kuntz, Furman
10. Makenzie Jones, Chattanooga
11. Riley Burr, Furman
12. Kaitlyn Stone, UNCG
13. McKenzie Hogue, Samford
14. Lindsey Trotter, Western Carolina

Men’s All-Freshman Team
David Ahlmeyer, Furman
Ares Reading, Furman
Jeb Jones, Samford
Noah Dolhare, Furman
Seth Bowdon, ETSU
Jonathan Krone, VMI
Dennison Kelly, VMI

Women’s All-Freshman Team
McKenzie Hogue, Samford
Lauren Peterson, Furman
Katie Strozier, Samford
Lindsay Holliday, ETSU
Lesley Green, Chattanooga
Heidi Fortin, The Citadel
Mattie Parker, Chattanooga

Men’s Freshman of the Year
David Ahlmeyer, Furman

Women’s Freshman of the Year
McKenzie Hogue, Samford

Men’s Runner of the Year
Ryan Adams, Furman

Women’s Runner of the Year
Hannah Steelman, Wofford

Men’s Pinnacle Award Recipient
Trent Mandato, Furman

Women’s Pinnacle Award Recipient
Emma Kuntz, Furman

Men’s Coach of the Year
Robert Gary, Furman

Women’s Coaches of the Year
Robert Gary, Furman