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Greatest Canadian moments in NCAA cross-country history

Tomorrow two Canadians are searching to help their teams to gold medals and in the process earn themselves a top 10 finish. In anticipation, here's a look back at great Canadian NCAA cross-country performances

Justyn Knight

Tomorrow are the NCAA cross-country championships in Madison, Wisconsin. This year on the women’s side, the University of New Mexico Lobos are looking for another championship win. London, Ont. native Charlotte Prouse was on the gold medal winning 2017 squad, and is ready for the 2018 race. Prouse is hoping to help her team to a gold medal finish, and in the process land herself in the top 10. 

Justyn Knight
Photo: Michael Scott/Syracuse Athletics.

In the men’s race, Rory Linkletter of BYU is hoping to help his team to the podium. Linkletter won pre-NCAA’s in Wisconsin, and is excited heading into his last collegiate cross-country season. The events get underway at 11:45 a.m. EDT. In anticipation of the event, Canadian Running took a look back at great Canadian performances from NCAA cross-country years past. 

RELATED: Charlotte Prouse is looking for a second NCAA XC victory

Justyn Knight – 2017 

In his final shot at an NCAA cross-country title, Knight came through last year taking the men’s win. Knight was in the lead pack for the entirety of the race though didn’t front-run until the final straightaway. Three runners – Knight, Baxter and another NAU runner, Tyler Day – were clear of the field in the final K. The margin of victory over Baxter, who led from 8K until the home stretch, was a mere 0.67 seconds. 

Knight has gone on the sign with the Reebok Boston Track Club, where he will be coached by his former coach at Syracuse University, Chris Fox

Sheila Reid – 2010 and 2011

Reid took the title in both 2010 and 2011 while representing Villanova University. In 2011 she out-kicked American Jordan Hasay. Reid was also a two-time NCAA track champion and went on to run for the Oregon Track Club, and represent Canada at the London 2012 Olympics. 

Kathy Butler – 1995

Butler was the 1995 cross-country champion. She attended the University of Wisconsin, and won the meet when it took place on her home course. She was a four-time OFSAA cross-country champion and following her NCAA career, went on to represent Great Britain and Canada at two Olympics. 

Simon Bairu – 2004, 2005

Bairu was the winner of both the 2004 and 2005 NCAA cross-country championships and became the Canadian record holder over 10,000m. The Saskatchewan native attended the University of Wisconsin where he was coached by Jerry Schumacher, who is now the coach of the Bowerman Track Club. Bowerman is where the new Canadian 10,000m record holder Mohammed Ahmed now trains. Ahmed also attended Wisconsin. Bairu continued his running career representing Canada at the 2010 cross-country world championships, and eventually moving off the track and onto the roads. 

Cam Levins and Mohammed Ahmed – 2011 

Levins and Ahmed, both current Canadian record holders, were fourth and fifth respectively in 2011. Levins was a senior at Southern Utah University and Ahmed was a junior at Wisconsin. Ahmed’s team won that year, and under two seconds seperated the runners at the line.