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Kantonen leads way for UND women's cross-country team

Park Rapids' Lydia Kantonen ended the season as the top runner for the University of North Dakota women's cross-country team. Kantonen capped off her sophomore season by earning all-conference Second Team honors after placing 11th overall with a ...

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Park Rapids' Lydia Kantonen (13) was the top finisher for the University of North Dakota women's cross-country team at the Summit League Championships and NCAA Division I Midwest Regionals. UND athletics photo

Park Rapids' Lydia Kantonen ended the season as the top runner for the University of North Dakota women's cross-country team.

Kantonen capped off her sophomore season by earning all-conference Second Team honors after placing 11th overall with a 6K time of 21:50 (which was a personal best) at the Summit League Championships at Omaha, Nebraska, on Oct. 27. UND finished fourth in the eight-team field with 92 points to trail South Dakota (51), North Dakota State University (52) and South Dakota State University (61). Fort Wayne (146), Nebraska-Omaha (153), Western Illinois (192) and Oral Roberts (231) trailed the Fighting Hawks, who were making their Summit League debut. Emma Rafuse of Fort Wayne led the 65-runner field with a winning time of 20:32.

At the season-ending NCAA Division I Midwest Regionals at Peoria, Illinois, on Nov. 9, Kantonen again led the Fighting Hawks by placing 85th overall in 21:57. UND finished 26th out of 35 teams with 631 points. Callie Logue clocked a winning time of 20:13 to lead the 232-runner field in leading Iowa State to the team title with 78 points.

Kantonen was UND's No. 3 runner at the season-opening Bison Open at Fargo on Aug. 31 with a 4K time of 14:39 to place 11th overall out of 34 runners. Kelby Anderson led the pack in 13:59 as NDSU won the three-team meet with 19 points.

At the Greeno/Dirksen Invitational at Lincoln, Nebraska, on Sept. 15, Kantonen was the Fighting Hawks' No. 2 runner by placing 39th overall in 22:44. UND finished eighth out of 12 teams with 203 points. Iowa's Andrea Shine led the 142-runner field with a winning 6K time of 21:15 while Michigan won the team title with 20 points.

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Kantonen took over the No. 1 spot for the Fighting Hawks at the University of Minnesota Roy Griak Invitational at Minneapolis on Sept. 29 with a 6K time of 22:38 to finish 50th overall. Bethany Hasz of Minnesota led the 151-runner field in 20:47 as Minnesota won the team title with 52 points. UND finished 11th out of 14 teams with 290 points.

UND hosted the Ron Pynn Classic on Oct. 13 with Kantonen placing fifth overall as the Fighting Hawks' No. 2 runner with a 5K time of 18:08. Park Rapids' Megan Olson was UND's No. 8 runner with a time of 21:29 for 57th place as the Fighting Sioux placed second out of nine teams with 40 points. Anderson led the field of 75 runners with a time of 17:20 as NDSU took first with 23 points.

1982 Dawson-Boyd High School graduate
1987 Moorhead State University graduate
Sports reporter for Park Rapids Enterprise since 1987
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