Zerzan and Batch Earn NWC Runner of the Week Honors

SALEM, ORE. -- Willamette University cross country runners Ian Batch (Jr., Eagle, ID/Capital HS) and Sarah Zerzan (Jr., San Carlos, CA/Notre Dame HS) earned Northwest Conference men’s and women’s Runner of the Week honors, respectively, after their performances on Saturday, Sept. 30 at the 32nd Annual Charles Bowles Invitational. The event, which featured four races with a total of more than 1,000 entries, was hosted by Willamette at Bush’s Pasture Park.

Zerzan set a new school record in winning the Cardinal Women’s 5K Race in 17:11.0. Her efforts helped Willamette’s women take second place in the Cardinal 5K team standings. Zerzan won by more than 40 yards, as she easily outraced the field of NCAA Division II, NCAA Division III and NAIA runners. She broke the previous Willamette women’s 5K record of 17:27.0, set more than 20 years ago by Kara Crisifulli in 1985.

Including Zerzan, a total of 14 runners represented Willamette in the Cardinal Women’s 5K. Overall, 298 runners finished the race, while 26 colleges and universities recorded team scores.

Batch led the Bearcat men’s team to a sixth place finish in the Cardinal 8K team standings. Willamette placed three runners in the Top 50 and six in the Top 60. Batch led the way with his 11th place finish, running the course in 24:54.05. Overall, Willamette entered 22 runners in the Cardinal Men’s 8K. The race was the first of the day and featured a total of 305 runners, with 31 colleges and universities registering team scores.

Both of Willamette’s cross country teams remain highly ranked this season. The women’s squad is #12 in this week’s NCAA Division III rankings, while the men remain ranked #15 for the second week in a row.