Women's Cross Country, Track & Field
Illini Travel to Normal for Illinois Intercollegiate Championships

Senior Courtney Yaeger is one of many Illini who will open their 2012 season this Friday at the Illinois Intercollegiate Championships.
Senior Courtney Yaeger is one of many Illini who will open their 2012 season this Friday at the Illinois Intercollegiate Championships.

Sept. 13, 2012

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Illinois Intercollegiate Championships
Friday, Sept. 14 (5:00 p.m.) - 5K race
Weibring Golf Course // Normal, Ill.

The Fighting Illini women's cross country team will head to Normal, Ill., for the Illinois Intercollegiate Championships. The women's 5K race will begin at 5 p.m. CT, followed by the men's 8K race at 5:45 p.m. CT. Illinois placed third in the meet in 2010 after winning back-to-back years in 2007 and 2008. The Illinois Intercollegiate is a race made up of colleges and universities of all sizes from all over the state. Illinois will open up senior Courtney Yaeger, who is expected to be one of Illinois' top runners this season.

"The expectation for this weekend is to go and give ourselves a chance to win," Rasmussen said. "Everytime we put our toe on the line, that has to be the expectation. We have to go out and compete well and see where we're at as a team. This weekend will be good for everyone since there will be a lot of competitors. The course is fast just like the Notre Dame course in a few weeks. I think the girls are back into a competitive mode so if they work well together during the race, we will have success."

Illinois will run a big field in the Illinois Intercollegiate Championships, as most of the Illini runners will be competing for the first time this season. Courtney Yaeger will open her season this Friday, as the senior is coming off her school record breaking 10,000m during the track season. Also making their season debut are senior Madeline Aufmann, junior's Katie Porada and Meghan Frigo, and sophomore Colette Falsey, four Illini who ran at the Big Ten Championships last season. Eleven of the Illinois runners will be racing in their first meet.

Illinois took home a fifth-place finish at the Illini Challenge last weekend, as senior Meagan Hynes led the squad, finishing 15th overall with a personal-best 4K time of 15:31. Michelle Frigo was one of two Illini to compete in their first collegiate meet, as she finished second for the Orange and Blue and 22nd overall with a time of 15:43. Finishing third for the squad was Michelle Stratton who crossed the line with a time of 16:12, followed closely behind by freshman Natalie Wynn who finished with a time of 16:14. Junior Rachel Irion also set a new personal best during the season opener, with a time of 16:21.

The Illini take a week off before heading to South Bend, Ind., for the Notre Dame Invitational on Sept. 28. The meet will start at 1:30 p.m. CT.