In the final team standings, the Huskies topped in-state foes DePaul and SIU-Edwardsville, in addition to UMKC and Creighton. Yet, the team’s performance was hampered by an illness that affected several team members during the race.
“This is certainly not the outcome we were hoping for,” said NIU head coach Greg Hipp. “Overall, the girls did compete, but things just did not go well. We had our one and two go down after being sick all week. We just weren’t able to hit the goals this time around.”
In the final cross country race of her career, Courtney Oldenburg paced NIU one last time with a 127th place finish, crossing the finish line at 23:17.37.
However, Oldenburg was running in the top 60 until collapsing at the 5K mark from illness. After about 30 seconds on the ground, she returned to her feet and gutted out the remaining portion of the course. The senior ends her career as the school’s record holder in both the 5K and 6K, both of which were set earlier this season.
Freshman Hannah Savage came in 201st place overall with a time of 25:01.98. Fellow freshman Ali Olson was unable to finish the race after falling to the ground with 400 meters left. She was taken to the medical tent for evaluation before being released an hour later. For more information on NIU cross country and Huskie athletics, visit www.niuhuskies.com.