The Minnesota women's cross country team hosts the annual Oz Memorial Run on Saturday in its season opener. The 6-kilometer race is set for an 11 a.m. start at the Les Bolstad Course in Falcon Heights.
Meet Honors Former Coach
The Oz Memorial Run is named in memory of former Drake coach Gary Osborn, who passed away May 21, 2000. Osborn was a longtime friend of Minnesota head coach Gary Wilson.
Four teams will be competing in the Oz Memorial Run this year: Minnesota, Bethel, Drake and Minnesota State, Mankato.
Vasiljeva Out for the Season
Golden Gopher senior Darja Vasiljeva will miss the 2003 cross country season and the 2004 track seasons with an injury to the hamstring of her left leg. Vasiljeva will undergo surgery on Oct. 3.
Vasiljeva is a three-time letterwinner in both cross country and track. She earned All-Midwest Region honors in each of the last two cross country seasons and has competed in the NCAA Championships every year of her cross country career. Last season, Vasiljeva was a first-team All-Big Ten honoree after finishing third in the Big Ten Cross Country Championships. She ran the fastest 6-kilometer time in school history (20:49.77) at the 2002 NCAA Midwest Regional to place fifth and earn a trip to the NCAA Cross Country Championships as an individual, where she placed 87th. In all, Vasiljeva owns nine of the top 20 6-kilometer times in Golden Gopher women's cross country history.
Vasiljeva is expected to return for her final cross country and track seasons in 2004-05.
Brown Impressive at Intrasquad
Redshirt freshman Emily Brown won the 5-kilometer intrasquad race last Saturday. Brown covered the course in 19:20.8 in her first race since sitting out last season due to foot surgery.
A Look Ahead
Minnesota's next competition is in two weeks when the Golden Gophers host the prestigious Roy Griak Invitational on Sept. 27.