Wildcats Look for Third-Consecutive Trip to National Championships

Wildcats Look for Third-Consecutive Trip to National Championships

MARQUETTE, Mich.—No. 17 Northern Michigan University Women's Cross Country will participate in the NCAA Division II Midwest Region Championships Saturday in Cedarville, Ohio, with the hopes of advancing to the NCAA II National Championships for the third consecutive season. The start of the race is scheduled for 10:30 a.m.

Coverage of the race can be found at nmuwildcats.com and on social media using the handle @NMU_Wildcats.

Postseason Notes:

All-Conference. Five NMU runners earned all-conference honors with their performance at the 2017 Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Championships two weekends ago. Senior Kameron Burmeister (Menominee, Michigan) and sophomore Katelyn Smith (Gaylord, Michigan) fifth and sixth to garner first-team honors. Senior Vivian Hett (Burnsville, Minnesota) and juniors Sophie McDonald (Park City, Utah) and Abby Fifarek (Buckley, Michigan) were named to the second team. As a team, the Wildcats finished second behind Grand Valley State University.

Region Rankings. The Wildcats are currently ranked fourth in the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association Midwest Region Rankings. Ahead of the Wildcats are GVSU, Hillsdale College, and Walsh University. The top-four teams remained the same for the second-consecutive edition on the poll.

National Rankings. Tied with the University of Minnesota Duluth, NMU is tied for 17th in the USTFCCCA National Poll. Both programs received 64 points after the conference championships week. California Baptist University is the top-ranked team for the second straight week after receiving all eight first-place votes. GVSU is second, while Adams State University rounds out the top-three. The other two programs ahead of NMU in the region poll are also in the top-10 with Hillsdale in eighth and Walsh in 10th, respectively.

The Field. Including NMU, the field at Saturday's event will include six teams ranked in the USTFCCCA Top-25. Three teams will come into the event ranked ahead of the Wildcats, Including Grand Valley who have been ranked first or second every week of the season in the USTFCCCA national poll.

2016 Championships. A season ago, the Wildcats finished fourth to advance to the NCAA II National Championships in back-to-back seasons. GVSU took home the team title will Cedarville University and the University of Southern Indiana also finished above the Wildcats. Hillsdale also advanced to the National Championships with a fifth-place finish. A pair of NMU runners earned All-Region honors by placing in the top-25. Burmeister earned her third career All-Region award by placing 7th, while McDonald earned her second crossing the finish line in 23rd.

National Championships. The NCAA II National Championships are set to be held November 18 in Evansville, Indiana. The top-three teams at the regional will advance to the National Championships, as will the top-three individuals from a non-advancing team. Following the conclusion of all regional events, eight at-large teams will be chosen from across the country to advance to the National Championships.

Elvin R. King Cross Country Course. Located in Cedarville, Ohio, near the campus of Cedarville University, the address is listed below and the course map can be found HERE.

Elvin R. King Cross Country Course.

251 N. Main Street

Cedarville, OH 45314