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Cross Country: Strong Performances Carry Ragin’ Cajuns At FSU Invitational

Matt Sullivan, Asst Sports Information Director, October 11, 2013

Louisiana makes final tuneup next week at UALR Invitational

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Facing its toughest competition of the 2013 season, six runners on the Ragin’ Cajuns women’s cross country team each posted times of under 20 minutes, while the men’s team placed five runners in the top-25 on Friday at the 41st annual Florida State Invitational at the Apalachee Regional Park.

Competing in its fourth event of the season, the Ragin’ Cajuns finished fourth among six Division I schools on the men’s side while Louisiana was fifth among six schools on the women’s side that was paced by No. 2-ranked Florida State and South Florida, ranked No. 15 in the South Region.

Sophomore Anna Katherine Devitt placed 14th overall on the women’s 5K course after recording a time of 18 minutes, 25.16 seconds. Claire Hodges placed 18th overall for the Ragin’ Cajuns in 18:30.61, followed by Ashley Irwin (27th, 19:09.20), Danielle Castaldi (30th, 19:24.90), Courtney Musgrove (42nd, 19:55.64) and Jessica Donald (43rd, 19:57.37). Kaylei Esfeller (47th, 20:13.45), Genevieve Roy (49th, 20:19.42) and Camille Barnett (55th, 20:50.74) rounded out the Ragin’ Cajuns lineup on the women’s side.

"We were hoping for our top five runners on the women’s side to run in the 19’s (minute-mark) or below and we had six," Ragin’ Cajuns assistant coach Kelly LaMaison said. "Anna Katherine turned in a top-20 performance against some heavy competition and Claire Hodges wasn’t far behind. Ashley (Irwin), Danielle (Castaldi) and Courtney (Musgrove) each made huge strides for us in closing out our top five and running personal-best times."

On the men’s side, Logan Pearce continued his impressive freshman campaign finishing 10th overall. The West Monroe native was one of two Ragin’ Cajuns to post a top-20 performance after he covered the 8K course in 25:35.72.

Corbett Ourso finished 15th overall for Louisiana in 26:04.89 and was followed by Trey Bonin (21st, 26:57.90), Jacob Chicola (22nd, 26:59.09), Cole Stafford (23rd, 27:02.15), Scott Brewster (26th, 27:18.33), Sean Bezdek (27:39.54) and Alex Hebert (33rd, 28:20.92).

"Logan ran a great race against a great field and all of our guys ran well on a very good course," LaMaison said. "We were very excited to see the guys close gaps where we needed to and move forward as a team."

Florida State placed eight runners in the top 10 and ran away with the event on the women’s side with 15 points followed by South Florida (80), Florida A&M (97), Jacksonville (102), Louisiana (107) and Florida Gulf Coast (124). In the men’s event, FAMU claimed the title with 32 points followed by FSU (43), FGCU (61), Louisiana (91), USF (133) and JU (170).

The Ragin’ Cajuns will return to action on Oct. 19 when it competes in the UALR Invitational in Little Rock, Ark. The meet will be the final tuneup for Louisiana before competing in the 2013 Sun Belt Conference Championships on Nov. 2 in Troy, Ala.

WOMEN’S DIVISION I TEAM SCORES
1. Florida State 15; 2. South Florida 80; 3. Florida A&M 97; 4. Jacksonville 102; 5. Louisiana 107; 6. Florida Gulf Coast 124.

LOUISIANA INDIVIDUALS
14. Anna Katherine Devitt 18:25.16; 18. Claire Hodges 18:30.61; 27. Ashley Irwin 19:09.20; 30. Danielle Castaldi 19:24.90; 42. Courtney Musgrove 19:55.64; 43. Jessica Donald 19:57.37; 47. Kaylei Esfeller 20:13.45; 49. Genevieve Roy 20:19.42; 55. Camille Barnett 20:50.74.

MEN’S DIVISION I TEAM SCORES
1. Florida A&M 32; 2. Florida State 43; 3. Florida Gulf Coast 61; 4. Louisiana 91; 5. South Florida 133; 6. Jacksonville 170.

LOUISIANA INDIVIDUALS
10. Logan Pearce 25:35.72; 15. Corbett Ourso 26:04.89; 21. Trey Bonin 26:57.90; 22. Jacob Chicola 26:59.09; 23. Cole Stafford 27:02.15; 26. Scott Brewster 27:18.33; 28. Sean Bezdek 27:39.54; 33. Alex Hebert 28:20.92.