CARY - In honor of her God-mother, Janessa Benn had a career performance at the 3rd Annual Robert Shumake HBCU Cross Country Challenge at the Wake Med Sports Complex.
Benn placed third overall in the women's 5k run with a time of 19:14, just seconds behind the first place finisher Amber Brooks of N.C. Central (19:05.3). Benn ran with a pink ribbon on her jersey to mark the beginning of Breast Cancer Awareness Month and to represent for her God-mother who is a breast cancer survivor.
The women placed seventh out of 19 teams that competed. Juniors Arianna Betts and Kristin Rush placed 15th and 16th in 20:34.6 and 20:34.9 respectively. Junior Samaria Johnson finished 19th (20:49.5) and sophomore Roshel Bygrave finished 63rd and completed the course in 23:21.5.
"We all went out and did our best," said Benn. "I am proud of our team and excited for the MEACs."
For the men, junior captain Paris Simmons set the pace for the Aggies by finishing the course in 27:37.7 and placing 18th overall. The men placed sixth out of 16 teams in the 8K race.
Freshman Christian Harrison followed Simmons in 23rd. Junior Steve Liggins finished 28th (28:42.5), senior Danzeto Cephas placed 32nd (29:07.7) and Marvin Lambert finished 62nd (31:40.2).
"When you get out, stay out. Meaning once the race starts, run and don't look back," explained Simmons. "I am proud of the progression of our team. I am not worried about the competition. We are prepared for the MEAC Championship."
The men's race ended in a photo finish with Winston Salem State's Andrew Chebii-Singh wining with a time of 25:22.9.