BUFFALO, N.Y. - Placing four runners in the top 20, the Miami University women's cross country team earned a second-place finish Saturday morning at the 2012 Mid-American Conference Championships, hosted by the University at Buffalo at a cold and rainy Beaver Island State Park.

The RedHawks fought through the elements to total 81 points for their runner-up finish while Toledo, which is ranked 20th nationally, captured its third straight MAC title with a league-record 24 points, placing all five scorers in the top eight. Ohio was third behind Miami with 92 points, as the Bobcats' Julie Accurso won the individual title in 20:48.4. Central Michigan (124 points) and Eastern Michigan (144) rounded out the top five in the 12-team field.

Redshirt junior Monica Fischer (Cincinnati, Ohio) was Miami's top finisher for the second straight meet and second time in her career, placing 10th overall in 22:00.6, improving 21 places from last year's MAC Championship. By finishing in the top 14, she earned Second-Team All-MAC honors for the first time in her career.

Sophomore Jess Hoover (Hilliard, Ohio), who was a Second-Team All-MAC performer as a freshman last year, was the second RedHawk to cross, taking 15th overall in 22:11.0. She just missed repeating as an All-MAC recipient as Toledo's eighth runner snuck in two seconds ahead of her for 14th place overall, though Hoover only counted for 14 points because only the top seven runners per team count for team scoring.

Fellow sophomore Elisa Frazier (Williamsville, N.Y), running just miles from her hometown, was Miami's third scorer in 17th place, clocking 22:11.9, while also improving 21 spots from last year's MAC meet. Junior Erica Howes (Fairfax, Va.), running in her first MAC Championship, was right behind in 18th in 22:15.1, while freshman Brenna Poulsen (Indianapolis, Ind.) rounded out the scoring five in 25th in 22:22.8.

Fellow freshman Julia Valencia (South Lyon, Mich.) was Miami's sixth runner in 27th (22:24.3) while sophomore Anna Lamb (Granville, Ohio) completed the RedHawks' top seven in 42nd (22:41.3).

Miami has now finished in the top three at the MAC Championship in each of the last six years, winning titles in 2008 and 2009 and taking third three times, including each of the two previous years.

The RedHawks next run at the Great Lakes Regional Championship Friday, Nov. 9 in Madison, Wis. where they will try to earn a spot in the NCAA Championship, which is Nov. 17.

--MURedHawks.com--