Villalobos, Wallin, Lead Gusties at NCAA Regionals Posted on November 12th, 2022 by

Photo courtesy of St. Olaf College. Credit: Caleb Williams - St. Olaf College. Evelyn Villalobos pictured back row, second from left


NORTHFIELD, Minn. — The Gustavus men’s and women’s cross country teams competed at the NCAA North Regional hosted by St. Olaf on Saturday. The Gusties were led by Evelyn Villalobos (Jr., Crystal), who placed 19th for the Gustie women, while the men were led by Tucker Wallin, crossing the line in 26:11.4.

Villalobos earned All-Region honors, placing in the top-35 at No. 19 with a time of 22:45.8. “We’ll find out about national qualifiers tomorrow, but Evelyn should be competing at the national meet. She put herself in a great position,” said Head Coach Brenden Huber. “She did everything she needed to do, and she got the job done.”

Sydney Hagen (So., Starbuck) finished next for the Gusties, placing 81st in 24:20.7. Just behind her was Molly Liston (Fy., Richfield), placing 82nd in her first NCAA Regional, crossing the line in 24:21.2. Molly Weberg (Sr., Duluth) crossed the line next for 101st (24:44.6), followed by Tainia Koivisto (Sr., Babbitt) in 122nd (25:03.7) and Abby Vizenor (So., Jordan) rounding out the Gustie top-five at 162nd (25:48.8). The Gustie women finished 13th of 33 teams. Fellow MIAC competitor Carleton placed first in the region, while host St. Olaf finished third.

“It was a great experience for the rest of the ladies. We compete in a really tough region, but it went about as well as we expected. They ran for each other every step of the way and we’re really proud of all their efforts this season.”

Tucker Wallin (Sr., Red Wing) was the first to cross the line for the Gustie men, placing 69th in 26:11.4. Jake Wielgos (Sr., Elburn, Ill.) would be next, crossing in 26:35.4 for 92nd. Following him was Logan McCullough (Jr., Waverly, Iowa), finishing 113th in 27:03.8. Trevor LaVigne (Sr., Farmington) and Carson Roehl (So., Waconia) would be the last two of the Gustie top-five to cross the line, finishing in 122nd (27:13.2) and 127th (27:24.1). The Gustie men finished 19th of 28 teams. UW-Whitewater finished first in the region on the men’s side.

“On the guys side, we ran a pack-strategy again. We executed it really well in the second half. We had our first half struggles, and we definitely have more work to do. When you run a team of seven, all seven have to be on. We had a couple compete at their best and we were really happy to see Tucker get back in front. Overall, all seven had a great effort, and we’re really proud of the awesome performance our guys had today.”

The NCAA will release selections for the national meet Sunday, Nov. 13. From there, selected teams and individuals will race in Lansing, Mich. on Nov. 19.


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