ELON, N.C. -- Versus a field of NCAA Division I programs at Friday's 4,000 meter Elon Invitational, Meredith College cross country runner Allie Bucknam led the Avenging Angels with a time of 16:52. She and Macy Brinson fell just short of a top-50 finish in the season opener.
High Point captured the overall win with 28 points, and Campbell and UNC-Greensboro followed in second and third. Meredith edged N.C Central by nine points to place seventh.
Brinson trimmed 16 seconds off her time at last year's 4K, and Megan Evans followed for the Angels, improving her 2017 performance by 27 seconds to 19:08. But the largest improvement to kickoff the season came from Meredith Wyatt, who knocked off more than two minutes of her pace at last year's Phoenix race, for a time of 20:35.
Rookies Mitxi Diaz and Isabelle Pasley debuted with a pair of strong performances for Meredith and show promise for a solid 2018 season.
In two weeks the Avenging Angels compete locally at the Adidas Cross Country Challenge at nearby WakeMed Park in Cary, North Carolina. The collegiate women's race is set to begin at 5:25 p.m. Friday, Sept. 14.