The Wolfpacker

September 2015

The Wolfpacker: An Independent Magazine Covering NC State Sports

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66 ■ THE WOLFPACKER BY BRUCE WINKWORTH T he NC State's women cross country team finished 16th at the NCAA Championships a year ago, with two-time All-American Joanna Thompson leading the way. However, head coach Laurie Henes is quick to point out that while 2014 was a good season it was a stepping-stone for the Wolfpack and not a milestone. "We were happy to get back into the top 25 last year, but we're not satisfied with 16th," Henes said. "We want to get back in the top 10 and have a chance at the podium." For some perspective, NC State's women have placed 16th or better nationally 27 times in the last 38 years (since 1978), with 16 top-10 finishes, 11 top-five show- ings and a pair of national championships. Wolfpack runners have earned All-America honors 43 times, including 11 multi-time All-Americans and five individual national championships. The 2015 Wolfpack should have the in- gredients to challenge for a spot in the top 10 or better. Seven NC State runners, five of them upperclassmen, have lined up for multiple postseason races (the ACC Cham- pionships, plus the NCAA regional and championship meets). Last year's freshman class adds quality depth to a crowded group of veteran front-line performers, and this year's incoming recruiting class could be the program's best in recent history. The first order of business will be deal- ing with the loss of Thompson and Keny- etta Iyevbele, who was an All-American in track and a dependable leader and per- former in cross country. Henes will look to senior Samantha George and juniors Me- gan Moye and Erika Kemp for leadership this season. All three have lined up multiple times in big late-season races. ■ PREVIEW WOMEN'S CROSS COUNTRY HIGH AMBITIONS The Wolfpack Seeks To Build Off Last Year's 16th-Place Finish At The NCAA Championships Junior Erika Kemp earned All-NCAA Southeast Regional honors last season after her 13th-place finish in the race. PHOTO BY CHERYL TREWORGY

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