Michigan, Wisconsin and Illinois Round Out Top 10
Nov. 20, 2006
The Michigan Wolverines garnered a third place finish and were closely followed by Wisconsin (fourth) and Illinois (eighth) at the 2006 NCAA Championships on the LaVern Gibson Championships Course in Terre Haute, Ind. on Monday Nov. 20.
Behind the All-America performance of junior/sophomore Nicole Edwards, the Wolverines' third-place finish is the second highest in team history.
Edwards earned All-America honors for the first time in her career, leading the No. 10 ranked Wolverines across the finish line in 12th place with a time of 21:07.2. She improved 60 spots from her placing last season at the NCAA meet.
On the strength of two All-America performances, the Wisconsin women's cross country team captured a fourth place finish-the best under head coach Jim Stintzi and the highest since 1999 when UW also placed fourth.
Leading the way for Wisconsin were freshman Hanna Grinaker (Detroit Lakes, Minn.) and senior Katrina Rundhaug (Dodgeville, Wis.) who each earned All-America status, finishing 13th and 23rd, respectively on the 6,000-meter course. They are the first UW All-Americans under Stintzi and the first since 2000 when Erica Palmer and Bethany Brewster earned the honors.
Grinaker crossed the finish line in 21:08 for the Badgers first freshman All-American since Suzy Favor in 1986. Grinaker, the 2006 Big Ten Freshman of the Year, led UW in six meets this season. She placed fourth at the Great Lakes Regional and third at the Big Ten championships. Grinaker also earned Big Ten Runner of the Week honors after her first-place finish at the Pioneer Harrier Invitational.
Running in her final collegiate cross country event, Rundhaug posted a time of 21:16 to finish 26th overall, the best in her career. She concludes her senior season with her first All-America honors, her second consecutive all-region honor and her first and All-Big Ten honor.
The Orange and Blue tallied 304 points in the race, missing sixth place by a mere four points, in their third-consecutive NCAA Championship appearance.
Freshman Angela Bizzarri was the first Illini and fourth freshman to cross the line in 24th, a finish that also allowed her to garner All-America honors. Senior Cassie Hunt, the second scorer for Illinois in 33rd, missed the same honors by three spots. Freshman Stephanie Baliga and senior Stephanie Simms were the third and fourth finishers for Illinois in 52nd and 60th, respectively.