May 8, 2010

Bobcats Cycling Team One Day Closer to Road National Championship

MADISON, WIS. -- The Lees-McRae College Bobcats cycling team got one step closer to winning the 2010 USA Collegiate Cycling Road National Championship with two solid races in the men's and women's criterium.

On a windy day, the Lady Bobcats took control of the race from the start in the nearly 80 rider field. Carla Swart and Erica Zaveta finished in the top ten. Swart, who won the DI women's Road Race National Championship on Friday, finished in second with Zaveta taking ninth. Rachel Warner finished just outside the top ten with a 12th place finish, and Cinthia Lehner finished 30th. The Lady Bobcats team held the lead on the UC-Davis, who started the day in second for the overall national title, and put the pressure on the men's team in their criterium.

In the men's criterium, the Bobcats stepped up and held off the the other teams in the top five including finishing just ahead of UC-Davis. The team had three riders in the top 30 with Nathan Larson, Eric Thompson and Joseph Welsh finishing 25th, 27th and 29th respectively. Zachery Felpel finished 47th.

Lees-McRae (281 points) holds a ten-point lead over Marian University (271 points) heading into the final day of competition on Sunday -- the team time trial. UC-Davis, who was in second after day one, slips down to fifth with 206 points. Fort Lewis College sits in third with 226 points and Midwestern State University is in fourth with 215 points.

In the individual omnium, Swart holds a commanding 79-point lead with a total of 335 points. Swart is looking to three-peat as the Division I Omnium Individual Road National Champion. In 2009, Swart became the first collegiate rider to win the individual omnium national championship in all four disciplines.