Nov. 19, 2016
By Megan Golden
TERRE HAUTE, Ind. — Irish sophomore Anna Rohrer is all too familiar with LaVern Gibson Course (Terre Haute, Indiana), racing to a third-place individual finish and guiding the University of Notre Dame women’s cross country team to an 11th-place finish on Saturday.
A Mishawaka, Ind., native, Rohrer (19:44.6) set the tone early, running at the front of the pack for roughly the first 5K of the race. Rohrer led her teammates through the 45-degree temperatures and blustery conditions, earning All-America honors for the second consecutive season.
Notre Dame sophomore Annie Heffernan (20:24.5) finished 41st and graduate student Danielle Aragon (20:32.4) crossed the finish line in 52nd.
By The Numbers
In its sixth straight appearance (and 15th overall) in the NCAA Championship, the team recorded the program’s fifth-best team finish in the national meet.
Top Five Team Finishes:
2002: 3rd (170 points)
2004: 4th (170 points)
2005: 7th (252 points)
2015: 8th (276 points)
2016: 11th (338 points)
Runner of the Day
The runner of the day is unarguably sophomore Anna Rohrer. The 2016 Atlantic Coast Conference Cross Country Champion, Rohrer competed fearlessly in her second career NCAA Cross Country Championship. Leading the pack of 250 runners at the 5K mark, she ran with conviction in the coldest weather conditions the team has experienced all season.
Rohrer’s time of 19:44.6 marks the second-fastest NCAA Championship 6K time in Irish women’s program history. Molly Seidel owns the top time of 19:28.6, recorded in Louisville, Kentucky, last season.
After placing sixth at the 2015 NCAA Cross Country Championship, Rohrer earned her second top-10 finish and All-America honors as only a sophomore.
Graduate student Danielle Aragon completed her final meet of her cross country career, finishing 52nd individually (20:32.4). Running alongside Aragon was her sister, Stanford freshman Christina Aragon, who finished 38th (20:23.5).
“It’s pretty special,” Danielle said. “If you would have told me I would be in the top-60 my freshman or sophomore year–I was the team alternate–and I’d be running with my sister at one point in the race, I’d be [happy].”
Anna Rohrer Says…
On her emotions crossing the finish line…
“My emotions crossing the finish line were mixed because I obviously wanted to win. At the same time, I knew I ran as hard as I could, so I’m happy.”
On her comfort level on the course…
“It was a tough race where we pushed the pace the whole time, but that’s when I run my best. I think the cold, windy conditions worked in my favor since I live in the Midwest. I enjoy the rough conditions because it makes me feel tough.”
Coming Up Next
The Notre Dame track and field program opens its indoor track season in the Blue & Gold Invitational at 4:30 p.m. ET on December 2 at Loftus Sports Center.
Megan Golden, athletics communications assistant director at the University of Notre Dame, has been part of the Fighting Irish athletics communications team since August of 2016. In her role, she coordinates all media efforts for the Notre Dame women’s lacrosse and cross country/track and field programs. A native of Cleveland, Ohio, Golden is a 2014 graduate of Saint Mary’s College and former Irish women’s basketball manager. Prior to arriving at Notre Dame, she worked in public relations with the Cleveland Indians and Chicago White Sox.