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Westminster cross-country: Lange places 71st at NAIA Men's Cross Country National Championships

By Josh Fisher

For the Deseret News

Published: Saturday, Nov. 17 2012 5:28 p.m. MST

VANCOUVER, Wash. – Oliver Lange from Westminster College finished 71st at the 2012 NAIA Men's Cross Country National Championships held Saturday at the Fort Vancouver National Historic Site.

Lange is the first male Griffin to compete at the National Championships, and he finished the 8K course with a time of 25:25. The junior placed third among runners from the Frontier Conference.

St. Francis (Ill.) captured its first-ever team title and The Master's (Calif.) John Gilbertson won the Mustangs first individual championship.

The Fighting Saints had three runners place among the top 30 to tally 138 team points, led by Phil Rizzo. The senior posted an 8K time of 24:44 to finish second. Rizzo was followed by Mike Blaszczyk in 17th (25:10) and Brandon Carson at 18th (25:11).

Southern Oregon finished as the runner-up with 153 points and a duo of All-Americans. Coming in at third was Cal State San Marcos with 165 points and a pair of All-Americans, while Oklahoma Baptist finished fourth with 179 points and a trio of All-Americans. Rounding out the top-five teams was Aquinas (Mich.) with 191 points.

Gilbertson captured his first national title at the Fort Vancouver National Historic Site. Gilbertson finished the 8K course in 23:56 and winning The Master's first individual title in school history.

Ten teams were represented among the top-10 place winners.

It was the fourth-consecutive year the NAIA Men's Cross Country National Championships were held at the Fort Vancouver National Historic Site. It was hosted by the Cascade Collegiate Conference and Concordia University-Portland (Ore.).

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