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Barnett and True part of Pomeroys' national championship team

Sunday, November 8, 2009

CJ Barnett
Times Staff Report

CONCORD, NH -- In its first year of existence, the Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College cross country team is a national champion.

On Saturday afternoon, the Pomeroys placed all five of its scoring runners in the top-12 overall in claiming the title in the United States Collegiate Athletic Association National Cross Country Championship held in Concord, NH.

The team outscored Penn State Worthington-Scranton by a 33 to 64 score with Dine College, Southern Virginia and Penn College wrapping the top-five teams.

Mannie Bizuneh, a freshman from Franklin Central High School, was the overall winner for the Pomeroys in the six-kilometer race, claiming the title with a time of 23:26. Stephanie Runyon, also of the Pomeroys, was second in 24:32.

Former Northview runners, CJ Barnett and Allie True finished 18th and 19th respectively in 26:44 and 26:52.

The soccer team a SMWC also competed at the national level over the weekend.

Allie True
The Saint Mary-of-the-Woods Pomeroys earned a late bid to the United States College Athletic Association championship tournament near the end of October and began play over the weekend.

Coming in as the eighth-seed out of an eight-team field, the Pomeroys scored a pair of upsets to advance to the national championship game.

In the 1 p.m. semi-final game featuring fifth seed NHTI and eighth seed Saint-Mary-of-the-Woods College, Saint Mary-of-the-woods Erin Pugh scored two goals, including the game winning golden goal in the last two minutes of the second overtime.

Pugh, a former standout at Terre Haute North, scored in the 69th minute on an assist from Honorable Mention All-American Arrika Garcia to send the match into extra-time. With less than two minutes remaining in the extra session before a penalty kick shootout, Pugh scored off an assist from former Northview athlete, Cayla Yockey with 1:38 to go to advance Saint Mary-of-the-Woods to Sunday's championship match.

In the 3 PM semi-final game featuring second seed Penn College and third seed Marygrove College, Nicole Mabee scored the lone goal thirty seconds into the match in a game that featured fine defensive performances by both teams. Marygrove College, a first year program, will face Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College in the National Championship Final held on Sunday, though results weren't immediately available.

The Pomeroys advanced to the semifinal game via an exciting finish against defending champion, University of Southern Virginia, 1-0 on an unassisted goal by Pugh with one minute remaining in the second overtime period.

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