Bizzarri victory leads Illini to fifth

Bizzarri victory leads Illini to fifth

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. – Angela Bizzarri won the White race at the Pre-Nationals Invitational cross-country meet on Saturday, leading No. 18 Illinois to fifth place in the 37-team field.

The Illini senior finished the 6-kilometer event in 20 minutes, 27.8 seconds – the No. 3 overall time behind Blue race champion Jenny Barringer (19:50.9) of Colorado and runner-up Susan Kuijken (20:20.8) of Florida State.

The victory was Bizzarri's first since her collegiate debut in 2006 at the Brissman-Lundeen Invite at Credit Island near Davenport, Iowa. She finished 1.2 seconds ahead of White runner-up Kendra Schaaf of Washington.

"Angela did a great job today," UI coach Jeremy Rasmussen said. "The girl in front of her had the lead by about 20 seconds, but Angela did a great job of getting out of her comfort zone and starting to run a little bit harder. She eventually caught the girl down the home stretch and won.

"It's good for her to be in a situation like this because it is important for her to learn different styles of racing. She understands that she can run just as fast as anyone out there."

Illini sophomore Kristin Sutherland placed seventh in 20:50.3, while UI senior Elizabeth Boyle finished 20th in 21:10.2. Both runners ran personal bests in a 6K race.

On the men's side, Illini sophomore Colin Mickow continued his streak of team-leading performances, placing 71st in the White race.

Mickow completed the 8K race in 24:47.3, marking the fourth time in as many meets this season that the Princeton native was Illinois' top finisher.

The Illini placed 17th in the 35-team field.

Sophomore Chris DeSilva was the UI's No. 2 finisher and 78th overall in a personal-best 24:53.9.

In women's golf:

Illini out front. With two scorers among the top five, Illinois led the 13-team Hawkeye Invitational at Iowa City, Iowa, when the second round was suspended due to darkness. The round will resume this morning, followed by the final round of the 54-hole tournament.

The Illini were 3 strokes ahead of Iowa State when play was halted.

Raquel Hopton of Illinois shot a 2-under 70 in the second round and was second with a 2-over 146. Teammate Kaitlyn Wampler was in a two-way tie for fourth place with a 7-over total when her day ended on the 17th hole.

In women's swimming & diving:

Illini split in duals. One day after beating Michigan State in a Big Ten dual, Illinois split a double dual hosted by Oakland University in Rochester, Mich. The Illini beat the host Golden Grizzlies 178-122 and lost to Toledo 182-114.

Illinois' lone victory came in the 400-yard freestyle relay, where the foursome of Meghan Mason, Erin Lamb, Anna Johnson and Kristen Manias finished in 3:30.68. Illini entries also finished second and third in the event.

In men's tennis:

Duo advances. Dennis Nevolo and Marek Czerwinski of Illinois each won twice to advance to the quarterfinals at the ITA Midwest Regional Championships in Ann, Arbor, Mich. The third-seeded Nevolo, who won both his matches in straight sets, will face No. 7 seed Evan King of Michigan. Czerwinski stayed alive with a three-set win and a first-set tiebreaker in his third-round match. The Illini senior will meet No. 2 seed Moritz Baumann of Wisconsin today.

In soccer:

Offense carries Illini. Julie Ewing and Laura Knutson scored in the first half and Krystin Miller scored on a penalty kick in the second half of a 3-1 road victory against Iowa.

“A Big Ten win no matter how we get it is a good result,” Illini coach Janet Rayfield said. “It was definitely a good offensive performance for us, scoring three goals and creating chances.”

Illini (6-5-3, 1-1-2) keeper Alexandra Kapicka made one save.