Huskies Open Postseason Saturday at MAC Championships Northern Illinois to face MAC foes in Grand Island, N.Y.
Oct. 25, 2012
DEKALB, Ill. – The Northern Illinois cross country team begins the final stretch of their season Saturday when they head to Grand Island, N.Y., for the 2012 MAC Championships.
The Huskies will run at 10 a.m. on the Beaver Island State Park course, which sits just miles from Niagara Falls and the U.S.-Canadian border.
“Our goal all season long has been to be in the top half of the conference for the first time in program history and that would be a good step for us,” said Huskie head coach Greg Hipp. “After getting our first good recruiting class in here, we’ve improved with the girls who were here last year, so that’s the primary goal going into the MAC Championship.”
NIU capped off their regular season two weeks ago when they placed 14th at the Bradley Classic in Peoria, Ill. Senior Courtney Oldenburg broke the school’s 6K record with a 21:29 clip that was over 30 seconds better than the previous best mark. Additionally, Jamie Burr and Ali Olson boosted the Huskies with top 60 finishes.
The Huskies will face some stiff competition Saturday morning in western New York. Leading the field is defending conference champion Toledo, which is ranked No. 4 in the Great Lakes region and No. 20 nationally. Meanwhile, four other MAC foes – Miami (Ohio), Ohio, Eastern Michigan and Central Michigan – also rank among their region’s best and should figure greatly into who takes home the MAC title in 2012.
Last year at the MAC Championships in Muncie, Ind., the Huskies struggled to an 11th place finish. Oldenburg paced the NIU contingent with a 23:01.60 run.