Three-peat: Dalton State cross country wins third straight SSAC title

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The Dalton State College cross country team poses after winning the 2021 Southern States Athletic Conference championship.

The Dalton State College cross country team is the Southern States Athletic Conference champion once again.

The Lady Roadrunners had four of the top seven finishers at the 2021 SSAC Championship race in Oakville, Alabama, on Friday, edging out runner-up William Carey 28 points to 34 to win the program's third straight SSAC title.

Dalton State has won the conference five times since 2014.

Dalton State's Kathryn Vradenburgh was the top finisher overall at 18:34, finishing 18 seconds ahead of William Carey's Andi Wheeler. Riley Jo Ford (19:08) finished fourth, Alex Gass (19:31) was sixth and Kay Vradenburgh (19:32) was seventh. William Carey had three of the top five finishers.

Dalton State's Giselle Dominguez finished 10th with a time of 19:40.

Kathryn Vradenburgh finished third in the individual field last season and shaved 57 seconds off her time at the same course last season to earn the individual conference championship. She was named the runner of the week by the SSAC five times this season.

Blue Mountain was a distant third place in the team standings with 79, while Loyola finished fourth at 83 and Brewton-Parker was fifth with 146.

Dalton State earned a bid to the 2021 NAIA Women’s Cross Country Championship on Nov. 19 in Vancouver, Washington.

The Lady Roadrunners finished in 18th position at last season's national championship, which was held in April due to COVID-19. That was the program's highest finish in the national event.

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