Two runners from the College of Saint Benedict and one from Saint John’s University have qualified to compete at the NCAA Division III national cross country meet scheduled for this Saturday (Nov. 18) at Big Spring High School in Newville, Pennsylvania.
Seniors Fiona Smith and Annie Kiolbasa of CSB will compete in the women’s race, which is scheduled to begin at 11 a.m. (CST). SJU senior Lloyd Young will compete in the men’s race, which is scheduled to start at 10 a.m. (CST).
Smith finished in a time of 21 minutes, 49.6 seconds at nationals a year ago, placing second only to two-time national champion Kassie Parker of Loras (Iowa), who has since graduated. It marked her second-straight season earning All-American honors.
At last Saturday’s Division III North Region Championships in Colfax, Wisconsin, Smith took first place in a six-kilometer time of 20:42.2, topping her closest competitor by 25 seconds. It marked her third straight regional title, making her the first MIAC runner to accomplish that feat.
Last March, she become the first national champion in CSB history when she won the 5,000- and 3,000-meter runs at the Division III national indoor track and field meet. She followed that up by finishing second in both the 5,000- and 10,000-meter events at the Division III outdoor track and field meet in May.
She is now an 11-time All-American across cross country and indoor and outdoor track and field.
Kiolbasa, who recorded a time of 22:24.7 at regionals last Saturday, is making her first appearance at the national meet.
Young, meanwhile, is back at nationals for the third year in a row. He finished 40th of 294 runners last year, earning All-American honors. It marked the first time an SJU runner had accomplished that since Chris Erichsen in 2007.
He finished in a time of 24:51 at the regional meet last Saturday.
A livestream of both races will be available at www.NCAA.com.