Big Ten Women's Cross Country Championships Release
Oct. 25, 2006
All 11 conference schools, including five ranked in the top 15 of the latest USTFCCCA Top 30 Poll, will compete at the 2006 Big Ten Championship this Sunday, Oct. 29, at the Indiana Cross Country Course in Bloomington, Ind., on the campus of Indiana University.
The 6,000-meter race, which precedes the men's 8K race, will take place at 10:45 a.m. ET.
No. 3 Michigan looks to capture its fifth straight conference title and eighth overall, after posting three consecutive titles from 1992-94 and the last four since 2002. Wolverine mentor Mike McGuire, now in his 15th season, has seen U-M junior Alyson Kohlmeier, who finished runner-up at the Big Ten meet last year, and Erin Webster lead to the Maize and Blue this season. Webster finished seventh at the 2005 Big Ten Championship and captured two Runner of the Week awards this season.
The Wolverines, who placed three runners in the top 10 and scored all five runners in the top 14, have now finished in the top two at the championships 13 times under McGuire's tutelage.
Four women's squads enter the Big Ten Championships ranked among the top 10 teams in the nation. Following No. 3 Michigan is No. 5 Wisconsin, No. 6 Minnesota and No. 9 Illinois. Michigan State is ranked 13th nationally and Iowa is 23rd.
In 2005, the Illini finished runner-up to the Wolverines, while Minnesota, Indiana and Michigan State rounded out the top five in the team standings.
Illinois senior Cassie Hunt, last year's Big Ten Champion, Athlete of the Year and Athlete of the Championships, returns to defend her individual title, which she won by two seconds over Michigan's Kohlmeier.
This year's event marks the third occasion Indiana has hosted the women's Big Ten Championship. The Hoosiers first hosted in 1987 and then again in 1996. Wisconsin won both of those events in Bloomington, however Michigan is coming off a win on the IU course after claiming the NCAA Great Lakes Regional title last year.