Conlon places eighthKatie Conlon said improvement was her main concern heading into Saturday’s NAIA national meet in Vancouver, Wash. Mission accomplished.
By: David Griswold, The Jamestown Sun
By David Griswold
The Jamestown Sun
Katie Conlon said improvement was her main concern heading into Saturday’s NAIA national meet in Vancouver, Wash.
The Jamestown College junior placed eighth with a time of 18:13, improving two spots from last year’s 10th place finish, which was also held at the Fort Vancouver Historical Site in Vancouver, Wash.
“I’m happy but I think I could have maybe finished a little higher,” she said. “I didn’t get out as fast as I would have liked to and I kind of got blocked in.”
Despite the start, Conlon climbed into the top 10 in a field of over 300 runners and never fell back.
“People were shouting out what place I was in and I definitely wanted to do better than last year,” said Conlon. “I knew I was too far back to catch the leaders, so I wanted to make sure I stayed in the top 10.”
“That is a tremendous finish,” said Jamestown College coach Jim Clark.?“Katie had an amazing season and finished it right with an All-American effort.”
Shorter University senior Justyna Mudy won her second straight national title after finishing the course with a time of 17:42, edging out Karlee Coffey, of Eastern Oregon, by just four seconds.
Conlon’s eighth-place finish easily gave the Jamestown native All-American status for the third straight year. All-American honors are given out to the top 30 runners.
“Going into my freshman year, I never even thought about All-American honors,” Conlon said. “But getting it my first year has motivated me the last two (years).”
Conlon was joined by teammate Aleona Reyes at the national meet, but the Jimmie freshman had a migraine in the early stages of the race which prevented her from finishing.
“Aleona dropped from the race in the first mile and really did not even remember it,” Clark said. “I think it all caught up with her at the wrong moment.”
Reyes’ presence, however, helped out Conlon.
“I would have probably been a nervous wreck before (the race) if she hadn’t have gone,” said Conlon. “It’s nice to have someone else that you can talk to before the race.”
Conlon wasn’t the only Dakota Athletic Conference runner to eclipse the top 10 on Saturday.
Black Hills State’s Erin Curran came in fourth with a time of 17:52. Teammate Dickson Courtney also finished with All-American honors (28) along with Minot State’s Breyette Schall (15) and Courtney Schall (16).
California State-San Marcos repeated as national champs in the team competition with all five of the runners finishing in the top 50.
Biola followed in second place and the Yellow Jackets came in third.
NAIA National Meet
At Vancouver, Wash.
1, Justyna Mudy, Shorter, 17:42; 2, Karlee Coffey, Eastern Oregon, 17:46; 3, Obsie Birru, Grand View, 17:51; 4, Erin Curran, Black Hills State, 17:52; 5, Lauren Jimison, Azusa Pacific, 17:53; 6, Rachel Steil, Aquinas, 18:00; 7, Danielle Brenon, Houghton, 18:04; 8, Katie Conlon, Jamestown College, 18:13; 9, Kelsey Gasner, Biola, 18:14; 10, Helen Croft, Simon Fraser, 18:15; 11, Kelsey Klettke, Lewis-Clark, 18:16; 12, Rachael Dean, St. Xavier, 18:17; 13, Victoria Martinez, Azusa Pacific, 18:17; 14, Caitlin Villarreal, Cal St. San Marcos, 18:18; 15, Breyette Schall, Minot State, 18:20; 16, Courtney Schall, Minot State, 18:20; 17, Jennifer Mallen, Concordia (Calif.), 18:20; 18, Jessica Smith, Simon Fraser, 18:21; 19, Alice Taylor, Concordia (Ore.), 18:22; 20, Tynae Wilson, Malone, 18:22.
21, Michelle Steiger, Dordt, 18:23; 22, Ajok Deng, William Jewell, 18:23; 23, Bea Foley, Viterbo, 18:24; 24, Megan Williams, Vanguard, 18:24; 25, Katie Thede, Bioal, 18:26; 26, Poppy Lawman, Azusa Pacific, 18:30; 27, Kelly Thompson, Cal St. San Marcos, 18:30; 28, Dickson Courtney, Black Hills State, 18:32. 29, Chrissa Trudelle, Westmont, 18:32; 30, Carol Schryver, Cal St. San Marcos, 18:33; 31, Kara Nelson, Morningside, 18:35; 32, Jessica Sandoval,?Cal St. San Marcos, 18:36; 33, Leigh Anne Whiteside, Black Hills State, 18:37; 34, Sarah Brooks, Biola, 18:40; 35, Juline Brice, Webber, 18:41; 36, Kelsey Devereaux, Indiana Wesleyan, 18:41; 37, Summer Cano, Southern Oregon, 18:41; 38, Nelly Amenyogbe, British Columbia, 18:42; 39, Amy Pierson, Southwestern (Kan.); 40, Niesha Morgan, Park U, 18:43.
41, Lindsay Payne, Siena Heights, 18:43; 42, Erica Hoff, Cedarville, 18:44; 43, Kortney Ellingboe, Olivet Nazarene, 18:45; 44, Lauren Versweyveld, Olivet Nazarene, 18:45; 45, Suzanne Cornwell, Cal St. San Marcos, 18:47; 46, Jessica Hudelson, Morningside, 18:50; 47, Beka Bentle, Indiana Westleyan, 18:50; 48, Kriston Siemianowski, Viterbo, 18:50; 49, Ashley Unruh, Sioux Falls, 18:51; 50, Erin?Bauer, Malone, 18:52; 51, Junia Limage, Concordia (Ore.), 18:52; 52, Sarah Sawatzky, Simon Fraser, 18:53; 53, Hillary Holt, College of Idaho, 18:53; 54, Cecilia Burley, Kansas Wesleyan, 18:53; 55, Ashton Avery, Malone, 18:54; 56, Lindsey Pifher, Malone, 18:54; 57, Chelsea Janzen, Biola, 18:57; 58, Cassidy Wagner, Indiana Wesleyan, 18:57; 59, Lauren Moran, Concordia (Ore.), 18:58; 60, Marijean Wegert, Grace, 18:59.
Sun sports writer David Griswold can be reached at (701) 952-8462 or by email at email@example.com