St. Peter, Minn. – With all but one of its top four runners returning from a year ago, the Gustavus women’s cross country team is poised to make a push for a Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (MIAC) title on Saturday at the 2012 MIAC Championships. All 12 conference institutions will be represented in this year’s race, which will be held at Como Golf Course and is scheduled to start at 3:15 p.m.
“We should be tough on Saturday,” said head coach Dale Bahr. “Each one of them has their own little challenge and have been looking great in their training this week.”
Following a third place finish at last year’s MIAC Championships, the Gusties will lean on 2011 All-Conference performers Kate Eggers (Sr., Montevideo, Minn.) and Beth Hauer (Sr., Little Falls, Minn.) to set the tone on Saturday. Last season, Eggers posted a time of 22:50 to place her ninth, while Hauer finished in 23:14, which ranked her 15th. Rebecca Hare (Jr., Albany, Minn.) was the fourth Gustie to cross the finish line in 21st place with a time of 23:49 to earn All-Conference Honorable Mention honors.
“The seniors know that this is it, and they want to go out well,” stated Bahr. “The underclassmen have climbed on board and are fighting for every spot. It should be fun to watch.”
One of those underclassmen is sophomore Caitlin Fermoyle (Mendota Heights, Minn.). Fermoyle has put together an outstanding season thus far, finishing inside the top 20 in every race, including two first place finishes. Fermoyle won the Saint John’s Invitational with a time of 23:24 and the Gale Woods Invitational three weeks later after crossing the finish line in 23:23.2. She is the first Gustie to win multiple events in the same year since Hailey Harren `07 won six races in 2006.
The 2012 race marks the 15th anniversary of Como Park Golf Course in St. Paul, Minn., serving as the championship host site. The event will begin with the men’s 8K race at 2:15 p.m., followed by the women’s 6K race. Augsburg College is the host school for the 2012 MIAC Cross Country Championships. The day will conclude with a short awards ceremony to honor the team and individual champions and All-Conference runners near the clubhouse following the end of the women’s race. The Top 15 runners in each race will be named All-MIAC, with finishers 16-25 receiving Honorable Mention, and all will be recognized for their accomplishment during the presentation.