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Klugh Named to NCAA National XC Field
Liberty redshirt senior Jennifer Klugh will close out her collegiate running career on the biggest stage next weekend. She has qualified for the 2012 NCAA Division I Cross Country Championships, thanks to her impressive sixth-place finish at Friday's NCAA Division I Southeast Regional Championships.
Klugh's first career NCAA national meet appearance will take place on Nov. 17 at E.P. Tom Sawyer State Park in Louisville, Ky. The women's 6K championship race is set to begin at noon and will be followed by the men's 10K at 1:15 p.m. Both races are slated to be video streamed on NCAA.com.
Klugh will be just the second Lady Flame ever to race at the NCAA Division I Cross Country Championships, joining Heather Sagan, who qualified in both 2000 and 2001. The Buckeye State native will also be Liberty's first representative at the meet since Sam Chelanga and Evans Kigen both ran in the 2010 NCAA Division I Cross Country Championships.
Klugh's sixth-place effort on Friday equaled Sagan's 2001 performance as the highest placement ever by a Liberty women's runner at the NCAA Division I Southeast Regional Championships. It also made Klugh one of five women's individuals from the Southeast Region to qualify for Louisville. Klugh joins the Kentucky pair of Cally Macumber and Chelsea Oswald, North Carolina's Lianne Farber and Virginia's Catherine White as the region's representatives among the 38 women's individual competitors who will toe the starting line in Louisville next weekend.
Klugh prolonged her career with a record-setting performance on Friday at the NCAA Division I Southeast Regional Championships at McAlpine Creek Park in Charlotte, N.C. She covered the 6K course in 20:35.78, shaving 20 seconds off of her own school record.
Klugh's previous Liberty women's cross country 6K record time of 20:55.5 was established in 2010 at E.P. Tom Sawyer State Park, the venue for this year's NCAA Division I Cross Country Championships. Klugh has enjoyed success at the primarily flat Louisville course in recent years, earning a pair of all-region honors there. She finished 15th at the 2010 NCAA Division I Southeast Regional Championships and came in 20th at the same meet the following year.