SACRAMENTO, Calif. --- Tusculum University's Nicole McMillen finished 92nd overall at the NCAA Division II Women's Cross Country Championship, held Saturday at the Arcade Creek Course.
McMillen, making her second consecutive appearance at nationals, was just outside the top 10 after one mile on the six-kilometer course, but slipped through the field at each of the remaining checkpoints and crossed the line with a time of 21:36.9.
The graduate student from Pickering, Ontario was the South Atlantic Conference champion and runner-up at the Southeast Regional meet, but finished fourth among all regional runners behind Hannah Wolkenauer of Queens (29th), Micah Weathers of Augusta (44th) and Franziska Althaus of Wingate (75th).
McMillen was in tenth place after covering the first 800 meters in 2:28.4, and held in 11th place with a 5:17.2 mile. However, she slid 10 positions to 21st at the 2,300-meter mark at 7:56.0, and reached the 3.5-kilometer checkpoint in 49th place at 12:20.1. McMillen was 69th as the runners reached 4.3 kilometers, and dropped to 81st place by 5,100 meters. McMillen was able to hold off a pack of seven runners at the line to claim 92nd overall, behind her 59th-place finish at last year's national championship meet.
For her career, McMillen ran in 10 races at Tusculum and had four wins, two second-place finishes and a total of eight top-five finishes. She was the second Tusculum runner to compete at nationals in back-to-back years and the third-ever to run at the Division II Championship, joining Amanda Musick (2001, 2003, 2004) and Sue Lewis (2001).
Adams State swept the top three finishing positions and placed all five of its scorers in the top 11 to win the team championship with 23 points, ahead of Grand Valley State (87), Colorado School of Mines (134) and Western Colorado (192). Stephanie Cotter of Adams State beat teammate Eilish Flanagan by 23 1/2 seconds to win the individual title with a time of 19:15.5.
NCAA Division II Women's Cross Country Championship
at Sacramento, California
Individuals: 1. Stephanie Cotter (Adams State), 19:15.5; 2. Eilish Flanagan (Adams State), 19:39.0; 3. Roisin Flanagan (Adams State), 19:39.3; 4. Ida Narbuvoll (Mary), 20:12.1; 5. Emmanuelah Chelimo (Alaska Anchorage), 20:18.3; 92. Nicole McMillen (Tusculum), 21:36.9.
Team standings (Top 5): 1. Adams State, 23; 2. Grand Valley State, 87; 3. Colorado School of Mines, 134; 4. Western Colorado, 192; 5. Mary, 233.