Freeby Chosen as NWC Women's Cross Country Student-Athlete of the Week

Earns First Place, Sets Personal Record in 5K at Oak Knoll Loop Run

By Timothy Walsh, Athletics Communications Writer

SALEM, ORE. -- Willamette University's Michaela Freeby (Jr., Milwaukie, OR/Rex Putnam HS) has been selected Northwest Conference Women's Cross Country Student-Athlete of the Week for her accomplishments at the Oak Knoll Loop Run on Saturday, Sept. 21.

Freeby earned first place in the women's 5K race with a personal record time of 17:23.16. That time moved her into third place on Willamette's all-time cross country list for 5K races. She trails only Sarah Zerzan ('08) at 16:49.4 in 2006 and Maddie Coffman ('09) at 17:18.68 in 2008.

As a team, the Bearcats finished in third place behind Portland State University and the University of Portland, both NCAA Division I programs. Along with Freeby, Olivia Mancl (Fr., Seattle, WA/Roosevelt HS) placed third, while Taylor Ostrander (So., Soldotna, AK/Kenai Central HS) finished sixth.

Last year, Freeby earned third place at the NWC Championships to claim First Team All-NWC honors. She also achieved First Team All-West Region honors by placing ninth at the 2012 West Regional, helping WU receive an at-large bid to the NCAA Championships.

Last week, the Willamette women's cross country team was ranked 27th in the nation and second in the West Region.

Willamette is off next weekend, but will return to action by hosting the 39th Annual Charles Bowles Invitational on Saturday, Oct. 5 at Bush's Pasture Park in Salem, Ore. Each year, the Charles Bowles Invitational is one of the largest collegiate cross country meets on the West Coast. The first race is set to begin at 9:30 a.m. (PDT).

Michaela Freeby won the women's 5K Race at the Oak Knoll Loop Run.

Michaela Freeby won the women's 5K Race at the Oak Knoll Loop Run.