SDSU’s Lusignan, NDSU’s Wahlund Named Cross Country Athletes of the Year

South Dakota State's Trent Lusignan (Photo by Alex Lohr) and North Dakota State's Brecca Wahlund (Photo by Brian Drumm)

ELMHURST, Ill. – South Dakota State's Trent Lusignan and North Dakota State's Brecca Wahlund were named the 2013 Summit League Cross Country Athletes of the Year as voted on by the league's head coaches.  Lusignan and Wahlund each captured the 2013 Summit League Cross Country individual crowns and garnered their first Athlete of the Year honor.

Lusignan is the second-straight Jackrabbit to earn the Men's Cross Country Athlete of the Year award after finishing 12th at the NCAA Championships and collecting USTFCCCA All-American honors.  His NCAA finish marked the third-best men's finish at the NCAA Championships in league history as he clocked a time of 30:18.8.  One week prior, the junior recorded a runner-up finish at the NCAA Midwest Regional (30:30.3), tying the league's highest finish at an NCAA Regional, to earn USTFCCCA All-Region honors and qualify for the NCAA Championships.  At The Summit League Championships, the Shakopee, Minn., native captured his first individual league title en route to leading South Dakota State to its second-straight league crown, fourth in the last five years, and being named the Championship MVP and first team All-League.  Lusignan collected a league-high three Athlete of the Week awards and finished atop the league in the 8k with a time of 23:49.65.  He was the Jackrabbits' top finisher in every meet he competed in, including winning the SDSU Classic.

Wahlund becomes the first runner in North Dakota State school history to be named The Summit League Women's Cross Country Athlete of the Year.  The sophomore from Minot, N.D., was also the first Bison in program history to claim an individual league title as she led her squad to its third consecutive league championship, tying the second-longest streak in league history.  Wahlund won the women's 6k league title in 21:24.22, the sixth-fastest winning 6k time, and was named the Championship MVP and first team All-League for the second season in a row.  The Summit League Academic All-League honoree finished the season with the league's second-fastest 5k time (17:54.2).

In its fourth decade of Division I athletics, The Summit League offers 19 championship sports and has a combined enrollment of over 120,000 at eight institutions, including three located in top 60 U.S. metro populations and two land-grant universities. Member institutions include: Denver (University of Denver), Fort Wayne (Indiana University-Purdue University-Fort Wayne), IUPUI (Indiana University-Purdue University-Indianapolis), North Dakota State University, Omaha (University of Nebraska Omaha), the University of South Dakota, South Dakota State University and Western Illinois University. Previously known as the Mid-Continent Conference, The Summit League rebranded in 2007 and has since produced eight NCAA Champions, 62 All-Americans and 50 Academic All-America selections.

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