Whit women run to top of cross country invite

Whitman twins Emilie and Katri Gilbert take the top spots at the Whitman Invite.



With scores of fans lining the Fort Walla Walla cross country route, Whitman's Emilie Gilbert comes away with a hair-raising victory as she crosses the finish line to win the women's 6,000-meter race at the Whitman Invitational Saturday morning. Emilie's twin sister, Katri, finished in second place.

WALLA WALLA - The women ran wild for the Whitman College cross country team at the Whitman Invitational on Saturday, with twins Emilie and Katri Gilbert taking the top spots in the 6,000 meter race.

The men were not as successful, with runners from Lewis-Clark State College taking the top seven spots in the 8,000 meter.

Lewis-Clark was the only other school to attend the meet, due to the long weekend, according to a Whitman press-release.

Emilie took home a time of 23 minutes, 24 seconds and Katri was not far behind, finishing in 23:47. Freshman runner Erin Campell took fourth overall, third for Whitman, finishing 24:04.

"It was amazing watching Emilie run this race," Whitman coach Scott Shields said in an email. "She had a deal with (Lewis-Clark) number one runner for the first 4k of the race and then started to pull away and never looked back."

Katri Gilbert ran a different style of race, despite finishing within 27 seconds of her sister.

"Katri was able to catch (Lewis-Clark's) number one runner throughout the race and beat her by three seconds in the end," Shields said. "Katri really had to have a great race and she stepped up to the challenge today; more importantly, she did not have a very good year last year, so for her to come up this big at this point in the season was awesome."

Lewis-Clark took the third and fifth spots, with the Missionaries rounding out the rest of the top ten.

On the men's side, first year runner Oliver Wood was the first Missionary to finish, taking the eighth spot with a 27:50 time. Michael Jorgensen came in ninth, with a 28:01.

Despite his male runners failing to crack the top five finishers, Shields was proud of the way his top finishers ran.

"It was fun to watch Oliver and Michael stay focused and run a solid race," Shields said. "With the strong runners from LC they could have easily gotten carried away in the beginning of the race and gone out too fast, they kept their heads and performed very well."

Whitman's next event is on Sept. 17 at the Sundodger Invitational at Lincoln Park in Seattle. The meet is hosted by the University of Washington.


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