Mac women x-country team wins first-ever CIS medal

At historic Fort Henry Hill, the No. 2 McMaster women’s cross country team earned a bronze medal at the Canadian Interuniversity Sport championship on Saturday (Nov. 12). This is the first medal for McMaster women’s cross country team in history. The previous best finish for the McMaster women’s team came last year when they earned fourth.

McMaster was led by Jessica Pearo (Richmond Hill), who placed fifth in the five-kilometer race.

Pearo’s placing earns her a CIS First Team All-Canada award, and qualified her for the Fédération Internationale de Sport Universitaire (FISU) World University Cross Country championships on April 11, 2010 in Kingston, Ont.

Pearo’s fifth place finish is the second best in McMaster history. Mac Athletic Hall of Fame member Brenda Steenhoff placed fourth in 1988. Fellow McMaster Hall of Fame member, Olympian and current McMaster coach, Paula Schnurr also placed fourth in 1987.

McMaster’s 2008-09 female individual sport athlete of the year, Jillian Wyman (Dundas), placed 22nd on Saturday.

Sara Giovannetti (Mississauga) placed 23rd. Sarah Haliburton (Richmond Hill) finished 28th and Katie Anderson (Exeter) came in 49th for the Marauders.

The McMaster men’s team finished ninth in the 10-kilometer contest. Fourth year senior Larry Abbott (Sarnia) placed 15th. Corry McCurry (Bright) finished 44th.

The University of Guelph women’s team claimed its fifth straight title, while the Guelph men captured their fourth consecutive banner.