WOMEN’S: Coming in as the returning Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference champions, the women’s cross country team returned to the championship meet as favorites last weekend. They return top runners Samantha Rivard — who earned NSIC Athlete of the Week honors four times this season — and Breanna Colbenson, who were both influential for the team’s success last year. This year the Bulldogs put up another impressive effort, but a tiebreaker ruling left them just short of returning home with a championship. UMD and Augustana College ended the meet with exactly 48 points, but because Augustana’s individual times for their first, second and fifth place runners were higher than the Bulldogs in those same positions, they were awarded the 2014 NSIC Cross Country Championship.
Despite coming just short of their ultimate goal, UMD’s key runners came out with solid times, enough to earn Rivard, Colbenson and freshman Emi Trost All-NSIC first-team honors. In a race between 117 runners from 15 different schools, Rivard came in at number four, while Colbenson and Trost finished seventh and eighth respectively.
MEN’S: While the women have been running with their strongest competition at the head of the pack, the men’s leading runner is stuck sitting on the sidelines. Senior Dan Nielsen was unable to participate last Saturday due to an injury. Thought Nielsen was out, head coach Paul Nisius said he was satisfied with the way his group performed.
Out of the 12 teams competing, the Bulldogs ranked fifth. With five of those runners being freshman, Nisius sees a bright future for his team.
Junior Mitch Fisher was UMD’s top runner, coming in at 24 out of 109 runners. UMD also had runners finish in the top 40 at the meet in freshman Grant Pulver (30), freshman Cody Sedbrook (32), freshman Blake Anderson (36), junior Drew Johnson (39) and freshman Josh Peterson (40).
BY NICOLE BRODZIK Sports Editor