Heller '19 places 73rd at NCAA women's cross country meet

Grace Heller '19 finished 73rd at the NCAA Division III Women's Cross Country Championship on Saturday (Larry Levanti photo).
Grace Heller '19 finished 73rd at the NCAA Division III Women's Cross Country Championship on Saturday (Larry Levanti photo).

Hamilton College's Grace Heller '19 finished in 73rd place out of 279 runners in the 2018 NCAA Division III Women's Cross Country Championship at Lake Breeze Golf Club in Winneconne, Wisconsin, on Saturday.

Heller set a personal record with a time of 22:22.3 on the 6-kilometer course. She was in 59th place after 2,320 meters with a time of 8:28.8, and she slipped to 64th place at the 3-kilometer mark in 11:05.7. Heller was 75th at the 5K mark with a time of 18:42.7 but made up two places in the final 1,000 meters. Her average mile was just under six minutes at 5:59.8. Washington University of St. Louis' Paige Lawler was the individual race winner in 20:55.

Heller was in the NCAA championship for the second year in a row. She qualified for this year's event by finishing in 11th place out of 305 athletes with a 6-kilometer time of 23:01 in the 2018 NCAA Division III Atlantic Region Women's Cross Country Championship at Gloucester County DREAM Park in Logan Township, N.J., on Nov. 10. Fifty-six individuals -- the first seven student-athletes from each region who were not a part of a qualifying team -- and 32 teams were selected to participate in the national championship.