LAWRENCE, Kan. – Austyn Copp competed in the NAIA National Cross Country Meet in Lawrence, Kansas. There were 336 runners and 37 teams competing for the National Championship Title.
"It was an awesome opportunity to compete with some of the top runners," Copp said. "It was a pretty tough course, but I was able to maintain my pace. I knew I needed to get the end of the race kick and I was able to find one."
Copp posted a time of 19:37.90 for a pace of 6:19.2. She finished 127th overall out of 336 total runners, which placed her in the top 37 percent. She finished third among runners from the Frontier and North Star conferences.
"We were very excited to get her out her this year; our goal going in was to get her in the top 100. She was right on par for what she has done all year," Head Coach Ben Shroyer said. "She finished very strong at the end of the race, she took down 20 to 30 people. It shows how well she ran with how she finished, she ran a smart race."
To qualify for the National Meet, Copp posted a time of 19:22.74 at the Frontier/North Star Conference Meet, where she finished atop the women's ranks.
Among freshman runners at the National Meet, Copp was 21st overall out of 86 runners.
Copp is the first Blue Hawk to compete for the women's cross country team at the National Championship since Brittany Young in 2012. Copp finished four seconds ahead of Young (19:42).
"I know Dickinson State has had some pretty great runners and I want to help continue the tradition that the Blue Hawks have had," Copp said afterward. "It is an experience that I would like for many Blue Hawk runners to have in the future."
Copp is the first Dickinson State freshman to compete at the Women's National Championship since Kodi Klatt ('06) in 2003. Klatt finished 238th overall with a time of 21:33.
To see the full results from the Women's National Championship, click here.