DURHAM, N.C. - The Duke women’s cross country team is set to begin the 2018 season Friday evening as the Blue Devils travel to Elon to compete in the fifth annual Elon Opener. The race is slated for a 6:45 p.m. start with the racers covering a four-kilometer course.
Duke will field a five-competitor lineup in its first race of the season with three freshmen making their collegiate debuts. Co-captain Olivia Gwynn will get the start on Friday evening to begin her senior campaign. Gwynn is coming off a season which saw her race in both the ACC Cross Country Championships—where she posted a personal-best time—and the NCAA Southeast Regional Championships.
Veronica Brtek, Duke’s lone junior in the competition, will also get the start on Friday evening. In her sophomore season, Brtek eclipsed a personal-best in the ECU Pirates Invite, where she posted a third-place finish for the Blue Devils.
After redshirting her freshman year at Duke, Helen Williams will begin her collegiate career on Friday, while the true freshman duo of Ellen Hirsberg and Elizabeth Reneau will also don the Duke singlet for the first time to round out Duke’s five competitors in the race.
Among the Division I teams scheduled to compete at the Elon Opener along with the Blue Devils are Elon, UNCG, Coastal Carolina, North Carolina A&T and North Carolina Central. The race will be the season opener for each school.