Junior Sarah Reiter finishes 46th at the NCAA DI National Cross Country Championships to record the second-best individual finish for a female athlete in program history on a 6,000 meter course
Louisville, Ky. – Junior Sarah Reiter continues to leave her mark on the Eastern Washington University women's cross country program, as she recorded another program best finish, only this time at the NCAA Division I Cross Country Championships in Louisville, Ky., this morning (Nov. 21). Reiter finished her season with a 46th place finish in a time of 20:29.8 on the 6,000 meter course.
The previous program best for a female athlete on a 6,000 meter course was held by Mattie Bridgmon in 2007, where Bridgmon placed 64th with a time of 21:16.2. The current best overall finish at the NCAA National Championships is held by Kari McKay, who placed 33rd in 1991 with a time of 17:28.0 on a 5,000 meter course.
Reiter now holds two program best finishes for the EWU women's cross country team. At last year's Big Sky Cross Country Championships, Sarah finished in first place to take home the championship title, a first ever for any cross country athlete in program history.
Sarah was the top finisher at the National Championships against teams in the Big Sky Conference. She placed ahead of each Weber State athlete at the Championships. She was also the seventh finisher in the West Region at the Championships.
Comments from Sarah Reiter
"I was really happy to race at the National Championships and it gives me more motivation to keep putting in the work and improving. It was such a great experience."
Comments from Head Coach Chris Shane
"Sarah ran such a great race today and she had a really gutsy performance. She went out there and got in the front of the pack. If the pace was slow, we wanted her to hang out a little bit for a smooth race. As soon as the leaders started to push the pace, we were going to back off of the pace and settle into a rhythm and she did that very nicely. Sarah was running right between 30th and 45th for most of the race which is exactly where we wanted her to be. Our goal for her was to finish right inside of the top 40 which is All-American finish and she almost did that today."
"My hat goes off to Sarah for doing exactly what we came here to do, which was to run the race plan that we had prepared and give it her best shot. She went for it every step of the way and at the end of the race she can hold her head high knowing she went for it and she gave it everything she had. She was two seconds away from being an All-American athlete and it was such a wonderful race. I am such a proud coach, seeing an athlete that puts herself in a position to be a champion and she did that today."
"There were some incredible athletes in this field that she beat and this was a special race to get to. Just making it here was a big deal. I talked to her before the race and I told her that getting here is a big deal but giving it your best race is an even bigger deal and she was focused on that. This race can be very intimidating for many people, it's the best of the best in the country, and Sarah handled that like a pro. She got on the starting line, went to the front, and commanded her race and there is a lot to be said for that. There was so much support for her with the Eastern community and I am so happy to be part of a school that has so much school pride. You could feel the support for the program here and I'm really excited to be a part of Eastern because of that."