BEMIDJI, Minn. – The Bemidji State University cross country team hopes to improve on its 15th place finish at the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference Championships Oct. 26 with a strong performance at the NCAA Central Region Championships Saturday beginning at 10:30 a.m. The 6,000-meter race is set for the same location as the NSIC meet, Yankton Trail Park in Sioux Falls, S.D.
The race will feature 31 teams competing for a chance to advance to the NCAA DII National Cross Country Championships. The top four teams and top three individuals not from a qualifying team will move on to the national meet, which will be held at Plants Ferry Athletic Complex in Spokane, Wash. Nov. 23.
Bemidji State finished 23 of 26 teams at last year’s NCAA Regional. BSU posted 719 points and averaged a team time of twenty-five minutes and fourteen seconds. Sophomore Emily Turner (Bringham Lake, Minn.) is the top runner returning from last year’s participants. She recorded a time of 25:29.9 to take 156th. Sophomore Mikayla Connell (Bemidji, Minn.) was the only other Beaver who competed last year, as she posted a time of 25:40.5 to finish 160th.
At the NSIC Championship, BSU posted 396 points and completed the 6,000-meter race with a team time of 2:06:57 to finish last. Turner guided the Beavers with a time of 24:06 to finish 72nd out of 124 student-athletes. Sophomore Jolynne Denman (Esko, Minn.) posted a time of 25:17 to finish 94th.
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).