Lutsen, Minn. / Lutsen
St. Catherine cross country runner Ailee Larson (Lutsen, Minn.) had a day to remember Saturday at the UW-River Falls Falcon Invitational in River Falls, Wis. Larson finished first in a record-setting performance, as she set a new personal record, a new course record and recorded the second-fastest time in Wildcats history. For her historic run, Larson was named the MIAC Women's Cross Country Athlete-of-the-Week.
Larson ran to victory with a time of 22:12.6 to finish first in a field that included nine teams and 148 total runners. The junior's time was 1:19 faster than previous career best, and it was a new course record and five seconds better than anyone else in the field. The time is the second-fastest in St. Catherine history, just 14 seconds behind the record by All-American Greta Sieve, set in 2009. The field included runners from No. 6 UW-Eau Claire, and No. 16 UW-La Crosse. Larson led SCU to a sixth-place finish as a team.
The Wildcats and Larson will take this week off to enjoy their accomplishments, and to prepare for one of the biggest meets of the season, which is up next on their schedule. The University of Minnesota's Roy Griak Invitational, which is one of the Midwest's top races each season, begins at 9 a.m. on Saturday, Sept. 28, and it will be held at Les Bolstad Golf Course in St. Paul, Minn.