She has made her indelible mark on the Alaska cross-country scene, but entering the NCAA Division I women’s cross-country season, she was still a bit of an unknown.
Now, with the full attention of the national scene squarely on her, former Kenai runner and current Boise State athlete Allie Ostrander rose to the occasion and did what she does best, winning the women’s six-kilometer race Friday in Reno, Nevada, to capture the Mountain West Conference championship. The Boise State freshman won with a time of 21 minutes, 49.9 seconds, just over 15 seconds ahead of runner-up Courtney Frerichs of New Mexico.
Flaunting her powerful uphill speed that made her so successful on Seward’s Mount Marathon for many years, Ostrander pulled away from the field on a series of mild hills midway through the course to cruise to the comfortable win.
Ostrander became just the second freshman ever to capture the invididual MWC title, joining BYU’s Kassi Anderson in 2002. The stunning accomplishment is just the latest in a debut season that has seen Ostrander finish no lower than second in four races. Ostrander also claimed a victory in the World Mountain Running championships junior division in North Wales on Sept. 18.
The win also gave Boise State three straight individual championships, as Ostrander continued the success begun by former Bronco’s champ Emma Bates, who won the title in 2013 and 2014.
New Mexico cruised to the team championship with 24 points, placing six runners in the top eight. Ostrander’s individual win helped Boise State to finish second with 71.
Along with the victory, Ostrander was named Freshman of the Year, Athlete of the Year, and was named to the first team All-Conference list.