CROSS COUNTRY--Northern Illinois University at Notre Dame Invitational
/ at Notre Dame, IN / University of Notre Dame / Burke Memorial
Golf Course / Five-Kilometer Course / Friday / October 3, 2003
ILLINOIS UNIVERSITY at NOTRE DAME INVITATIONAL / at Notre Dame,
1. Wisconsin-Oshkosh 96
2. Calvin College 101
3. Alabama-Birmingham 113
3. Valparaiso 120
5. Hillsdale College 127
6. Malone College 170
7. Youngstown State 175
8. St. Francis (PA) 211
9. Northern Illinois 212
10. Notre Dame "B" 244
11. Windsor College 273
12. IUPU-Fort Wayne 287
13. Michigan State "B" 340
14. Wisconsin-Green Bay 411
15. Anderson 422
16. Arkansas State 433
17. Wright State 448
Northern Illinois Placewinners:
26) Alicja Czajka, 18:58; 35) Michelle Rhoden, 19:06; 36) Christina
Nieto, 19:06; 50) Emily Ramsey, 19:23;
65) Jessica Schauff, 19:35
66) Bonnie Miller, 19:35
CZAJKA RUNS FIRST SUB-19-MINUTE TIME OF SEASON, LEADS CROSS COUNTRY
TO NINTH AT NOTRE DAME
NOTRE DAME, IN --- Junior Alicja Czajka (Swarzedz, Poland
/ Poznan) cracked the 19-minute barrier for the first time this
season, running an 18:58 to lead the Northern Illinois University
women's cross country team to a ninth-place finish at the Notre
Dame Invitational Friday (Oct. 3).
Czajka---who owns three of the top ten five-kilometer times in NIU
history---placed 26th overall and knocked an incredible 55 seconds
off her season-best time.
"Its good for Alicja's hard work to finally start paying off,"
Huskie head coach Shantel Twiggs noted. "She had a rough
summer training period where she had to deal with some injuries.
Right now, we are trying to get her back to the point where she
is running everyday , and things are starting to fall back into
Picking up some of the slack during Czajka's slow start to the season
has been sophomore Christina Nieto (South Elgin / Elgin).
Nieto posted a career-best effort for the second time this season,
entering the chute at 19:06 to take home 36th-place honors. Junior
Michelle Rhoden (Joliet / West) ran the same exact time to
earn the 35th position just ahead of her teammate.
"This was a major step for Christina," Twiggs explained.
"She is also still trying to build her miles right now, and
this was really big for her in that respect."
Emily Ramsey (Waukesha, WI / West)---who posted the fastest
Huskie time in each of NIU's first two meets---finished Burke Memorial
Golf Course's five-kilometer spread in 19:23 to place 50th. Fellow
freshman Jessica Schauff (Dixon) and sophomore Bonnie
Miller (Plainfield) put up identical 19:35 efforts to come in
just behind Ramsey in the 65th and 66th spots, respectively.
Running in the women's Gold Division---the first race of the day---Northern
Ilinois tallied 212 team points, finishing ahead of the University
of Notre Dame's "B" squad as well as Michigan State University's
"B" team. The Huskies also placed ahead of fellow Division-I
compeitors Indiana University-Purdue University-Fort Wayne and the
University of Wisconsin-Green Bay.
"Our results today tell me that we are definitely moving in
the right direction," Twiggs added. "We are just going
to try and get everyone healthy, and we should see some big improvements
at the Mid-American Conference Championships in a few weeks."
The Huskies head to Lisle, IL, next Friday (Oct. 10) for the Benedictine
Eagle Invitational---an event NIU won last season. The six-kilometer
event is one of just two more tune-ups NIU has prior to conference
summit on November 1. Runners take to the starting line at 5:00
-30- -Copy by Brian Kedzior