The University of New Mexico captured its first NCAA women’s cross country title with an unofficial score of 49 points to finish 80 points ahead of Colorado at E. P. “Tom” Sawyer State Park in Louisville, Ky.
The Lobos' top five runners finished in the top 23. Courtney Frerichs led the Lobos with a fourth place finish. Alice Wright followed just behind her in fifth place just five seconds later.
Colorado finished second with 129 points. The Oregon Ducks took third with 214 points, which was their best finish since winning the national title in 2012.
Virginia holds the NCAA record for best score with 36 total points at the 1981 national championship. Eileen O’Connor finished third, Lesley Welch took fourth, Lisa Welch was sixth, Jill Haworth placed eighth and Marisa Schmitt rounded out the Cavaliers in 15th place for the NCAA record.
New Mexico was the most dominant team all year with victories at the Notre Dame Invitational (29 points), Wisconsin Adidas Invitational (32) and the Mountain West Conference Championship (24). The Lobos scored 50 points to lose by just one point against the Colorado Buffaloes at the NCAA Mountain Regional, but New Mexico was primarily running as a pack to tune up for nationals.
Notre Dame senior Molly Seidel won the women's individual crown with a 19:28.6 victory. Seidel made her NCAA cross country championship debut on the same course in Louisville as a freshman and placed 217th. Four years later, she comes away with her second NCAA title after winning last spring's NCAA 10,000-meter title on the track.
Boise State freshman Allie Ostrander finished second in 19:33.6.
- Christopher Chavez