The Maneater

Schweizer finishes 11th at national championships, earns All-American honors

Karissa Schweizer finished with a time of 19:47.5 to earn her sixth career All-American selection.

Karissa Schweizer, right, strides past an opposing runner at the NCAA Division I Cross Country Championships in Louisville, Kentucky on Nov. 18. Schweizer finished 11th in the 6k with a time of 19:47.5.

As senior Karissa Schweizer ran through the finish line at E.P. “Tom” Sawyer State Park, her career as one of the most decorated runners in the history of Missouri cross-country came to an end.

Schweizer finished 11th at the NCAA Division I Cross Country Championships in Louisville, Kentucky, with a time of 19:47.5 in the 6K, earning her sixth career All-American honor on Nov. 18.

After a fast start, Schweizer was unable to keep up with Ednah Kurgat, the individual champion from New Mexico, who finished with a time of 19:19.5.

Schweizer said the start kept her from settling into the race.

“It was just fast paced from the start and I couldn’t quite get comfortable,” Schweizer said. “It just wasn’t my day; everyone has those days. I just felt like heck that I wanted a shot at pushing through, but I’m really proud of myself for making it through the race.”

After seeing Kurgat pull away from the field, Schweizer saw her motivation waver as her hopes at another national title flickered away. Schweizer managed to use her signature kick to secure an 11th-place finish.

“I just went out there and had to deal with not being on my game that day,” Schweizer said. “I don’t know why. I don’t know what happened. Mentally it was very hard. Once you see your goal going away and you kinda give up a little bit, and to not give up completely I think was really big for me.”

Schweizer now closes the book on a storied cross-country career that included SEC Freshman of the Year honors followed by three All-Midwest honors, two All-American selections and an individual national championship that Schweizer won in her junior season.

Next, Schweizer will look toward the indoor track season, where she is the defending 5K national champion.

Schweizer said she will use her race as motivation for the upcoming track season.

“I’ll really take this to help motivate me to work towards having a strong indoor and to finish a strong outdoor [season],” Schweizer said.

Edited by Joe Noser | jnoser@themaneater.com

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