With junior Megan Duwell setting the pace, the Minnesota women’s cross country team captured its fourth-straight title at the Oz Memorial Run on Saturday.
For the second consecutive year, the Gophers posted a perfect score of 15 with members of the team clinching the top five finishes and eight of the top 10 times of the day.
Duwell earned her first individual medal at the collegiate level after crossing the six-kilometer race’s finish line with a time of 21:57 — 25 seconds ahead of senior Gabriele Anderson in second place.
Last weekend, Duwell placed first at Minnesota’s intrasquad meet — also held at the Les Bolstad Golf Course.
“Megan is off to a nice start on the season, as are others with her,” head coach Gary Wilson said in a statement. “We ran a decent race today, but this team is still very much a work in progress. Of course, that is exactly what you want at this time of the season.”
Rounding out the top five for Minnesota was junior Mallory Van Ness in third with a time 22:28.
Last year’s individual medalist, junior Jamie Cheever finished the race in 22:31 for fourth and junior Amy Laskowske crossed the line one second later in fifth.
Men take third in Calif.
Last week, Minnesota men’s cross country coach Steve Plasencia said he was interested in seeing sophomore Mike Torchia compete this weekend at the Aztec Invitational after the Rochester Lourdes graduate sat out nearly all of last season with a leg injury.
Torchia didn’t disappoint, posting a time of 25:19 over the eight-kilometer course and leading the Gophers with a 12th-place finish.
As a team, Minnesota combined for a third-place finish with 103 points behind Brigham Young (32 points) and second-place Northern Arizona (96) on what Plasencia described as a “fast” course.
Individual medalist Aron Rono of Azusa Pacific was one of two competitors to break the meet record and Plasencia commented that Torchia’s time “may have been a top-ten all-time finish,” before this year’s meet.
Plasencia also said he didn’t think running All-Americans Hassan Mead and Chris Rombough would have helped Minnesota’s case much.
“Even with Hassan and Rombough, we wouldn’t have been close,” Plasencia said.
Making things even more difficult for the Gophers was an unconventional course, Torchia said.
“It was not your stereotypical cross country race. It was half cross country, half road course,” the sophomore said. “But everybody had to run the same course this weekend.”
Sophomore Mike McFarland placed 19th for the Gophers with a time of 25:35.
Sophomore transfer Ben Blakenship ( 25:39) and redshirt freshman Sean Olson (25:40) — both competing for the first time for Minnesota — finished one second apart in 21st and 23rd, respectively.
Senior Ben Puhl (25:57) finished in 36th place to round out the Gophers scoring.
Nominate an exceptional graduating senior for the upcoming Ski-U-Mah Issue!
UMN students have traveled to Florida colleges to collaborate with students on various projects.
When UMN students plan for a vacation, having trip cancellation travel insurance is a worthwhile commodity to check out.
Minneapolis Used Cars
Give back to the Minnesota community with a boat donation at boat4causes.org.
If you have been involved in a car accident call a Philadelphia Car Accident Lawyer for a free consultation.