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by Baxter Cepeda, photo editor

 

“She tried to continue but she couldn’t,” HPU Coach Christian Friis said.

Teammate Louise Brasen finished the 6-kilometer course 16th overall in 23 minutes, eight seconds, best among Hawai‘i runners. The Lady Sea Warrior’s accumulated 285 points, while champions Chico State had 42 points. UC San Diego’s Miriam Hodgins took the individual title in 21:59.

Friis said that without Burger’s encounter with a rodent’s hole, HPU would have finished around 6th place. The BYU-Hawai‘i women finished 10th with 282 points, best amongst island schools.

Friis said that four other runners from Hawai‘i schools were injured, adding that island runners are at a disadvantage because they are not used to dealing with holes.

“ It was a bad course for cross country,” Friis said. “Small holes that can’t be calculated are not really fair.” He continued: “I was surprised that they didn’t fill them up or move the course around the holes.”

HPU’s Anne Olesen finished 40th overall in 24:04. Pia Folsing finished 45th in 24:12, Masako Sagawa was 61st in 24:39, and Leigh Meade finished 131st in 25:59.
“ We can be competitive, Friis said. “We can be up there.”

Sea Warrior Jacob Klausen finished 10th in the men’s 10 K in 33:05, best among Hawai‘i runners. Teammate Casper Dahl crossed the line 28th in 33:14. The Sea Warrior men did not compete as a team because Klausen and Dahl were the only HPU men to take the trip; five are needed for a team.
“ Jacob and Casper ran their best races of the season,” Friis said. “They stepped up to the competition.”

Chico State’s Patrick Boivin won the men’s race in 31:23 as his team dominated with 23 points, 74 points better than second place Cal Poly Pomona. The BUY-H men finished ninth with 278 points, also best amongst island schools.

Friis, in his second season coaching HPU runners, felt pleased with the team’s showing at Regionals. “Some people get intimidated, but it seems both the guys and the girls were ready to run with the best.”

HPU did not qualify any runners for the NCAA National Championships, but HPU is on the way up after winning many team and individual races this season, including a sweep of four conference titles. Last year HPU had just three individual wins by Matt Stevens.
“ It’s nice to improve,” Friis said. “It was a great season.”

 
Inga Burger, left, and Louise Brasen admire their PacWest championship plaque. The Lady Sea Warriors claimed 10th place at the NCAA West Regional in Chino, Calif.

Photo Baxter Cepeda
 

 

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