Wildcats Fall from National Poll Despite Weekly Award

Wildcats Fall from National Poll Despite Weekly Award

MARQUETTE, Mich. – Northern Michigan University Women's Cross Country fell out of the latest U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association Top-25, while senior Vivian Hett (Burnsville, Minnesota) finished as one of the top NCAA Division II runner over the weekend at the Roy Griak Cross Country Invitational hosted by the University of Minnesota.

Finishing fifth as a team among NCAA Division II programs at the meet, Hett's finish of 22 minutes, 53.8 seconds was enough for sixth overall. Her performance earned her first career Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Runner of the Week award, giving the Wildcats the honor for the third-consecutive week after sophomore Katelyn Smith (Gaylord, Michigan) getting the nod a week ago and senior Kameron Burmeister (Menominee, Michigan) earning the honor two week ago.

Smith was the top Wildcat for the second-straight week, finishing third in 22:44.4. Junior Abby Fifarek (Buckley, Michigan) rounded out the top-three finishers for NMU with a 46h-place finisher in 23:49.6. Juniors Kieren Becker (Fowler, Michigan) and Sophie McDonald (Park City, Utah) rounded out the scorers for the Wildcats placing 68th and 69th, respectively.

The USTFCCCA national poll, released Wednesday afternoon, has the Wildcats receiving the most votes (15) of any team not ranked in the top-25. It marks the first time since week one of 2014 that NMU has not been featured as one of the top-25 programs in the poll. GLIAC foes, Grand Valley State University and Hillsdale College are currently ranked first and fourth.

There was no change in the Regional Poll with NMU staying pat in sixth. GVSU remains atop both the regional and national polls. Hillsdale College remains in second after jumping from fifth to second a week ago. The University of Southern Indiana, Cedarville University, and Walsh University round out the top-five in the Midwest Region.

The Wildcats compete again Saturday in Escanaba, Michigan, at the Bay College Invitational.