BEMIDJI, Minn. – The Bemidji State University cross country team is set to compete in the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference Championship, Oct. 26, beginning at 10:30 a.m. The 6,000-meter race is hosted by Augustana College and will take place at Yankton Trail Park in Sioux Falls, S.D.
The 6,000-meter race is the longest of the season for BSU, as the squad has been building to the event. The Beavers were guided by freshman Nikki Szech (Long Prairie, Minn.) in their last competition, Oct. 11 at the Jimmie Invitational, as she posted a time of 21 minutes and 18 seconds. Bemidji State finished sixth in the 5,000-meter race.
Along with Szech, another student-athlete who has found success this season is sophomore Emily Turner (Bringham Lake, Minn.), who won the 4,000-meter Greenwood Run Sept. 6 with a time of 16:49 and guided the Beavers in the 5,000-meter Randy Smith Invitational (Sept. 13) with a time of 20:09.
Augustana has won the past five NSIC crowns, while Augie’s Runa Falch won the individual title in 2010 and 2011 and will be looking for her third championship. Last year’s individual champion, Melissa Agnew, graduated from the University of Mary, but returning from an injury, is her twin sister Jennifer Agnew. Falch and Agnew combined for five NSIC Athlete of the Week and three USTFCCA National Athlete of the Week honors this season.
Last season, the Beavers finished tied for 11th out of 14 teams with a team score of 330. Turner is the top returner from last season’s squad, as she crossed the finish line in 26:56.3 to sit 70th overall.
For more information on the Bemidji State cross country program, follow the Beavers on Twitter (@BSUBeavers), like them on Facebook (facebook.com/BSUBeavers or Track&Fiield/CrossCountry Facebook) or sign up for the TXTUpdates from BSUBeavers.com text-messaging system through the "Multimedia" pull down menu on the main page of BSUBeavers.com.
Nestled in Northern Minnesota’s wooded region and located on the shore of Lake Bemidji, Bemidji State University sponsors 15 varsity athletic programs with NCAA Division I men’s and women’s hockey membership in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association, while its 13 NCAA Division II programs hold membership in the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference (NSIC).