By Montana Tech Sports Information.
GREAT FALLS, Mont. – Montana Tech’s Carlin Manning won the individual title at the Frontier Conference Cross Country Championships at the Hickory Farm Golf Course today. Carroll College just edged Montana Tech in the Frontier Men’s Cross Country Championship today. The Saints also won the women’s championship with the Orediggers finishing in second.
Manning is the first Oredigger to win a Frontier Conference individual medal in cross county. She won the race by 24 second finishing with a time of 22:56.0 seconds in her first time running the course. Taleigh Adrian took sixth place with a time of 24:09.6 seconds and Alyssa Jany finished in 10th with a time of 24:22.1.
“I’m extremely proud of Carlin,” said head coach Zach Kughn. “She has worked so hard and developed so much and none of it has been by accident. She deserved this big win today. She hasn’t lost to a frontier conference runner all season. She will also go down in school history as being the first Montana Tech athlete to win a Frontier Conference Championship in Cross Country. Not even Oredigger Legend Assistant Coach Becca Richtman was able to pull that off. Today was her day. The V will be shining extra bright for her. She was on the original team in 2020, her conference finishes have gone from 24th to 12th to 5th to winning it all. Incredible. That’s an Oredigger.”
The Saints posted a score of 36 and the Orediggers finished with 45 points. Rocky Mountain took third with 56 points.
The Saints scored 38 points in the men’s race and the Oredigger finished with 41. Rocky Mountain took third with 49 points.
“We knew it was going to be a tight race between Tech, Carroll and Rocky on both sides. All of us have been in the national rankings for awhile now and we’ve switched up our order of finish quite a bit throughout the season. Unfortunately, today Carroll got the best of us,” said head coach Zach Kughn.
Kipainoi finished with a time of 25:26.5 seconds and Morgan finished with a 25:31.3 seconds.
The Saints finished in 4th, 5th, and 6th place spot, but is was their four and five runners taking 9th and 14th place that made the difference.
Benjamin Zerr was the only other Oredigger in the top 10 finishing in eighth place with a time of 26:21.3 seconds.
The NAIA National Championships are up next. Manning automatically qualifies for the race and the women will have to wait for the at-large bid ranked No. 20 in the nation. The men’s team is ranked No. 16 in the NAIA and will also wait for the championship announcement.
“We still had some great performances and I’m proud of the way we competed. Many people did better than expectations so we can’t be too disappointed. However, our bar is set at winning, so it stings a bit. We still have things to work on and we are fired up to get redemption on Carroll and show the rest of the NAIA what we can do at the national championships in two weeks.”