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Cross country heads to NCAA Midwest regionals

November 8, 2012
Jamie Burr

Jamie Burr

The Northern Illinois cross country team will continue their postseason Friday, Nov. 9, when it competes in the NCAA Midwest Regional Championships in Springfield, Mo.

The women’s 6K race begins at noon on the Missouri State Cross Country Complex with berths to the NCAA National Championships on the line.

“We’re looking to finish the season off on a positive note,” said NIU head coach Greg Hipp. “The MAC meet wasn’t as strong as we felt it should have been, so we’re looking for a little bit of redemption. We just need to approach this one a little bit differently so we can have the confidence that we know we are capable of.”

The Huskies will be looking to rebound from their 11th place finish at the MAC Championships on Oct. 27. In the conference meet, NIU placed three runners – Courtney Oldenburg, Jamie Burr and Ali Olson – in the top 70 and defeated Western Michigan in the final team standings.

On Friday, NIU will face off against some of the nation’s best programs in the Show Me State.

Included in the field are three programs in the nation’s top 30, including No. 2 Iowa State, No. 21 Oklahoma State and No. 28 Minnesota.

Greg Hipp

Greg Hipp

Along with that trio is local rival Northwestern, Iowa, Wichita State, Kansas State and Southern Illinois. Additionally, the region features four conference champions in Iowa State (Big 12), Loyola (Horizon League), Illinois State (Missouri Valley) and North Dakota State (Summit League).

“We just need to race with some more confidence,” Hipp said. “We are certainly a much fitter and talented team than we were a year ago, so I’m confident that we’ll be able to improve. It’s just a matter of how much.”

Last year, the Huskies hosted the NCAA Midwest Regional meet at the NIU North 40 and finished 28th overall as a team.

For more information on NIU cross country and Huskie athletics, visit