Twin sisters and Georgia cross country runners Jessica and Samantha Drop represented the Bulldogs at the NCAA championships at Terre Haute, Indiana, on Nov. 23.
Senior Jessica Drop said she walked away from her final race excited and proud. The senior runner earned her second All-American certificate at the NCAA Championships.
In the 6k race, Jessica finished 40th, with a time of 20:48.4. Samantha was not far behind, finishing in 45th at 20:54.3.
“It is always disappointing when you get so close to All-America honor but miss them," Samantha said.
Distance coach Patrick Cunniff said he was proud of the results. Samantha moved up 46 spots in the last two miles of the race. After the first two miles, Jessica was in 142nd place but managed to move to 35th by the four mile mark.
“It was muddy, it was nasty and both girls ran gritty races,” Cunniff said. “They were both smart enough to be patient early and then came forward and finished very well.”
Jessica’s prior experience running in the rain stopped it from affecting her race.
“This is not the first time I have run in these conditions and it was a little tougher going around the mud,” Jessica said. “But it was cross country weather and cross country conditions for my last race so I guess that's kind of fitting, " Jessica said.
The championships marked the final race for Jessica. However, Samantha, a redshirt junior, will return for one more season.
“This was truly the best field in NCAA history and I am proud of how Jess finished her career against this competition,” Cunniff said. “She had a stellar cross country career and we are excited to see what Sam can do in her final season next year."