BOONE, N.C. – The UNC Asheville women’s cross country team finished in fourth place against a very tough field at the Blue Ridge Open near Appalachian State Friday afternoon.


The men’s team came in 11th place with 327 points as the Bulldogs finished in front of 16 other teams at the 27-school meet.


Asheville’s women’s team was led by senior Melanie Kulesz. She posted a time of 18:21.22 over the 5K course and finished in ninth place. The Bulldogs accumulated 191 points in the meet. Asheville beat out teams like Duke, East Tennessee State, High Point, George Mason and Morehead State.


Freshman Sarah Heisner raced to a time of 18:56.25 and came in 21st place. Next up for Asheville was sophomore Erin Dalton at 19:21.50. She finished in 45th.


Kelsie Rubino took 57th and had a time of 19:31.31. Scarlett Beamon came in 59th at 19:34.59.


On the men’s side, Asheville’s top runner was freshman Dominic Collichio. He posted a time of 25:49.86 over the 8K hilly course and in 48th place.


Right behind Collichio was Kevin Paradise who finished in 50th place at a time of 25:51.86. Andy Thornburg came in 65th place at 26:03.96.


Brent Schouler raced over the 8K course with a time of 26:25.77 and finished in 81st. He was followed by Patrick Osborne at 26:31.28.


Friday’s meet was the final one before the Big South Conference championships in two weeks. Both Bulldog teams will begin preparing for the championship meet at VMI on Saturday, Nov. 2.