Claudia Beitel led the Lady Owls to their most successful season.
Nov. 15, 2003
Auburn, AL - For the first time in program history Florida Atlantic University sent its women's cross country team to the NCAA South Regional. The Lady Owls finished the year strong by placing 18th out of 25 teams. Senior Claudia Beitel finished 27th out of 176 runners, in a school record time of 21:46. The women's NCAA Regional race is 6k as opposed to the standard 5k. Greg Burke was the lone Owl that ran in the men's race.
Six other Lady Owls competed in the women's race. Junior Raynell Hagberg finished in the upper half at 73rd with a 22:49 completion time.
Burke, a senior, ran a personal best, 33:46, wrapping up his cross country career at FAU. The men's race is also extended in the NCAA Regional. The men ran a 10k instead of the standard 8k with 170 competitors. Burke helped the FAU men's cross country team to two top five finishes on the year, including a second place effort at the UCF Invitational.
Meanwhile, the Lady Owls capped off the most successful season in program history. The team made its first appearance in the NCAA South Regional and also finished within the top five in five out of the eight meets it competed. A fifth place finish at the Atlantic Sun Championships was also a program best.
Just as she did in the South Regional, Beitel led the Lady Owls in every race this season. The Longwood, FL native has certainly left her mark on the program, as she now owns the 5k and 6k school records. She also captured two Atlantic Sun Runner-of-the-Week awards and two first-place finishes (UCF and Hatter Invitational) during her senior campaign.