BLOOMINGTON, Minn. – The 2017 NCAA Division III Central Region Cross Country Championships were hosted by Carleton College this past Saturday in Northfield, Minn. The Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (MIAC) had a strong showing in both men's and women's races, with Carleton earning automatic qualification to the 2017 NCAA Division III National Championships for both men's and women's teams, while St. Olaf and St. Thomas secured at-large spots on the women's side.
Carleton scored 48 points to take home the women's regional championship, edging second-place Nebraska Wesleyan by 55 points. St. Olaf finished in fourth-place with a score of 114, while St. Thomas was right behind at 123. The Carleton men finished with 67 points, second only to Loras' 53.
The top two seven-person teams at each of the eight regional meets around the country automatically qualified for the National Championships, which are scheduled for Saturday, November 18 at the North Farm Facility in Elsah, Ill. An additional 16 teams for each race were then selected as at-large entries.
On the individual side, five MIAC competitors finished in the top-10 of the women's race. MIAC Women's Cross Country Athlete of the Year, Meg Mathison, came in first with a time of 21:45.0 and was followed at the finish line by Carleton teammate Emily Kaegi at 21:50.7. St. Olaf's Bryony Hawgood came in fourth at 22:06.4, while Bethel's Annika Halverson finished in sixth at 22:08.8 and Carleton's Amanda Mosborg ended up eighth at 22:15.6.
Three men's cross country runners from the MIAC finished in the top-10 as well. Carleton's Donson Cook-Gallardo – the 2017 MIAC Men's Cross Country Athlete of the Year – placed second with a time of 24:52.9, while teammate Matthew Wilkinson finished ninth at 25:21.5. Keith Ketola of St. Olaf came in just ahead of Wilkinson in eighth-place with a time of 25:17.4.
The first seven student-athletes from each region who were not part of a qualifying team were also selected for national competition. The MIAC landed four competitors among those 112 individual entries, including St. Olaf's Keith Ketola in the men's race, along with Bethel's Annika Halverson and Anna Hage and Gustavus' Sadie Novak-Klug in the women's.
Twenty-eight MIAC competitors also earned All-Region honors for their placement at the 2017 Central Region meet, including nine men and 19 women. The top-35 finishers in each race qualified for All-Region accolades.
2017 Men's Cross Country All-Central Region
| Donson Cook-Gallardo | Carleton |
| Tris Dodge | Carleton |
| Cameron Meikle | Carleton |
| Lucas Mueller | Carleton |
| Matthew Wilkinson | Carleton |
| Matthew Burgstahler | Saint John's |
| Keith Ketola | St. Olaf |
| Thomas Lerdall | St. Olaf |
| Karl Wachter | St. Thomas |
2017 Women's Cross Country All-Central Region
| Anna Hage | Bethel |
| Annika Halverson | Bethel |
| Ruthie Boyd | Carleton |
| Emma Greenlee | Carleton |
| Emily Kaegi | Carleton |
| Meg Mathison | Carleton |
| Amanda Mosborg | Carleton |
| Samantha Schnirring | Carleton |
| Sadie Novak-Klug | Gustavus |
| Lisa Fisher | St. Olaf |
| Bryony Hawgood | St. Olaf |
| Jordan Lutz | St. Olaf |
| Jena Moody | St. Olaf |
| Ali Glassbrenner | St. Thomas |
| Jenny Launder | St. Thomas |
| Melissa Marsh | St. Thomas |
| Amber Matzoll | St. Thomas |
| Sara Ness | St. Thomas |
| Becca Wilkin | St. Thomas |
The NCAA officially announced the 2017 national championship field on Monday. Carleton will represent the Conference on the men's side, while the Knights will be joined by St. Olaf and St. Thomas in the women's race. Principia College is set to host the Championships on November 18, with the men's race scheduled to begin at 11:00 a.m. followed by the women's race at 12:15 p.m.
NCAA cross country fans can watch the live stream of the NCAA Division III Cross Country Championships as FloTrack Pro subscribers for a monthly price of $19.99 or an annual price of $150. The subscription will include access to all FloTrack live broadcasts, video on-demand from all events, documentaries, technique videos and more. Coverage of the championships will be available starting at 11 a.m. until the conclusion of the awards ceremony, Saturday, November 18, and can be accessed at www.FloTrack.com.