On Friday, the Kenyon men’s and women’s cross country team competed in the JennaStrong Invitational, hosted by Wilmington College. Both teams finished in seventh place in the final race before the NCAC Championship.
Women: In a field of 240 runners, Olivia Ide ’27 led the way for the Owls in the 5K race. She finished in 22nd place with a time of 20:14.43. Ide, who has paced Kenyon in every race of her collegiate career, credited her training and the support of her team as the main sources of her success. “Putting 110% effort into the workouts and taking the easy days easy is the key to being able to run fast for a long time. Running is also a huge mental challenge, so maintaining a strong mentality is an extremely important part of training, racing and continuing to show up and work every day,” she wrote in an email to the Collegian. “And of course, the encouragement of my coach, teammates and family help me stay confident in my ability to run well.”
Anna Brown ’26 crossed the line next for the Owls, earning 32nd place in 20:26.24. Penny Griffioen ’27 finished 37th with a time of 20:40.18. Finally, Eva Shannon ’27 and Jada Swearingen ’24 finished within five seconds of each other, picking up 67th and 74th place respectively.
Men: Arthur Wellenstein ’27 clocked in first for Kenyon, finishing 19th out of 317 runners with a time of 26:08.41 in the 8K race. In the final race of the regular season, Wellenstein was able to fine-tune his approach. “My strategy was to stay smooth and conservative in the beginning of the race,” he wrote in an email to the Collegian. “This test helped me confirm a race strategy that works for me, which will help me for [the] conference [championship] coming up.” He also credited his teammates for his success: “I’ve been blessed with a fun, supportive team. If I’m not having fun, I can’t race well, so I’m very thankful.”
Keegan Minahan ’24 was the Owls’ next finisher, picking up 28th place with a time of 26:17.94. Joshua Breard ’26 crossed the line just behind Minahan, stopping the clock at 26:33.11 and earning a 34th place finish. Owen Rodstrom ’26 completed the course in 27:31.32 to finish in 68th place, and Henry Rodrigues ’26 took home 74th place with a time of 27:42.35.
Kenyon will travel to Granville, Ohio, on Oct. 28 to compete in the NCAC Championship meet. Both Ide and Wellenstein believe that the Owls are prepared to make a splash at the conference championship. “To paraphrase my captain Keegan Minahan’s words, we’ve all had great individual performances this season,” Wellenstein said. “All it takes is to put those together on one day to show the conference what we can do.” Ide concurred: “The team has trained hard from the beginning of summer until now, and the hardest work has been done. Our abilities are there, but we need to show it.”