McDonald Qualifies for USAT Elite Card, Takes Two Top-Fives at Clermont Challenge
McDonald Qualifies for USAT Elite Card, Takes Two Top-Fives at Clermont Challenge
Sunday, March 3, 2019

CLERMONT, Fla. (March 3, 2019) – ETSU Triathlon competed in their first event of 2019 Saturday and Sunday, traveling south for two days of Draft Legal U-25 Elite Development races.

“The Clermont Elite Development race is always stacked with very competitive athletes,” head coach Janine Pleasant said. “We knew going into the race that we had trained and tapered well and were at the top of our form.”

This proved to be the case specifically for one of Pleasant’s athletes, as the 2018 USA Triathlon Collegiate Triathlete Of The Year Lane McDonald (South Bend, Ind.) finished second amongst more than 70 female athletes competing on day one of the races, taking fourth-place Sunday to round out her banner weekend.

In addition to her pair of top-fives, McDonald qualified for her USA Triathlon Elite Card, and while she does not get the full benefits it has to offer because of her status as a student-athlete at an NCAA member institution, McDonald can use this card to race in high-ranking events against other top triathletes in order to gain experience.

“Lane was nursing some tendinitis,” Pleasant said. “She was slightly worried entering the race but her competitive spirit quickly ignited and she had a great swim, stayed safe in the large lead pack on the bike, then burned the house down on the run Saturday.”

Sophomore Morgan James (Clovis, Calif.) and freshman Cameron Seeley (Blacksburg, Va.) also competed both days in Clermont, James taking a pair of top-30 finishes from the weekend while Seeley finished 29th Saturday and 32nd Sunday, neither showing any sign of fatigue despite having to perform on back-to-back days. 

“Morgan and Cameron executed their races perfectly Saturday,” exclaimed Pleasant. “They had to hold back a bit for Sunday morning, but a good weekend for them overall.”

Pleased with the Bucs effort as a unit, Pleasant deferred credit to a former ETSU track athlete that has impacted the program in a positive way recently.

“Our assistant coach Matthew Warriner was a big part of our success,” Pleasant added. “He has been in charge of our run and strength training and has done a fantastic job. He has brought a strong work ethic and discipline to the team." 

Also competing for the Bucs were sophomores Hope Zimmerman (Crown Point, Ind.) and Carly Brewington (Coral Spring, Fla.), who will have their teammates eyes on them at the Bucs final event of the spring, the Trideltathon in nearby Knoxville, Tenn. Friday, April 19, in which they will be the only members of the Blue and Gold competing.

For more information on Buccaneer triathlon, visit ETSUBucs.com and click on the Women’s Triathlon page.