WILLIAMSBURG, Virginia — The University of Maryland Eastern Shore got a third-place finish from freshman Aurelia Jepkorir (Eldoret, Kenya) making her collegiate debut in the 5K for the women on Friday at the William & Mary Invitational. Her countryman Edwin Kipruto (Iten, Kenya) led the men’s team with a 10th place finish in the 6K event which included four personal records for the squad.
“Aurelia was leading the race with less than a mile remaining,” Hawks head coach Damion Drummond said. “While she eventually would finish third, it was impressive because it was her first time not only running the race in collegiate competition, but also the first time she had run the 5K distance in competition period.”
Senior Amirah Jones (Suffolk, Virginia) continued to impress in her final campaign coming in with a time of 21:26.46 which placed her 21st overall. Sophomore Fancy Kipyego (Kiptegap, Kenya) finished 30th (22:29.65).
The women picked up a third place finish as a team behind William & Mary and Christopher Newport, while the men’s squad finished in the same spot after the 6K event.
“We fared well against some experienced competition,” Drummond said. “This race was scheduled to challenge our teams a little more as we ramp up the early season.”
It was a third-place team finish for the men as well behind Kipruto (20:05.81) and a tight grouping of freshman Nahom Ftwi (Germantown, Maryland) who was 12th with a 20:25.16 and senior John Akakeya (Staten Island, New York) in 15th at 20:35.69. All three posted personal bests.
Senior Jonathan Robertson (Washington, D.C.) posted the Hawks’ fourth PR with a time of 23:18.32 and finished 34th. It was the first time he had run the 6K distance since he was at St. Augustine’s University before he transferred to The Shore.
This was Akakeya’s first competition of the season after missing the season-opener with an injury. The reigning team MVP will look to continue to improve heading into the Eastern Shore XC Invitational Sept. 21 at home, while the newcomers will keep pushing him.
“Overall, I’m very proud of the team as they performed up to par on the hilly terrain,” Drummond said. “Next week’s home competition should be just as exciting.”
Source: Maryland Eastern Shore