OU Steps It Up in the New Millennium
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Kristie Kieffer

The Oakland University women's cross country team finished the 2000 season in style. OU finished five races in the top five. Golden Grizzly Kristie Kieffer was named Mid-Con Runner of the Year. Kieffer was the first Golden Grizzly across the finish line in every race this year.

The Grizzlies started off on the right foot as they finished in first place at the Motor City Classic, September 2. OU's Kieffer took third place out of 30 runners with a time of 1913.42.

OU's second meet of the year was the Tommy Titan Classic hosted by Detroit Mercy September 9.  Kieffer paced the Grizzlies in a fourth-place finish by crossing the finish line with a time of 1844 (4th).

Kenosha, Wisconsin was the site of the Grizzlies next race, which was the Midwest Collegiate Meet September 16, 2000. The Golden Grizzlies recorded one of their best finishes of the year placing fourth out of 30 teams. Kieffer ran the 5K race in a time of 18:35, good for a fourth-place finish out of 322 runners. In second place for OU was Christina Colombe who finished 30th (19:23).

OU's fourth meet of the year was the Grand Valley State Tower Trail Classic September 23. The Grizzlies placed third out of seven teams in the meet. OU's Kieffer claimed first-place honors running the 5K in 19:00.41.  In 10th place was OU's Jennifer Kunst with a time of 20:19.24.

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OU Cross Country
Celebrates Kieffer's Victory

The Grizzlies traveled to Chicago, Illinois to participate in the Lakefront International hosted by Loyola University September 30.  OU placed 13th out of 46 teams in the event, while Kieffer added another first-place finish to her resume as she finished first in the 6K race (21:57).

On October 13 Oakland participated in the Michigan Intercollegiate Meet in Kalamazoo. The Grizzlies had their lowest finish of the year as they came in last place (5th).  Individually for OU, Kieffer took 10th place out of 47 runners with a time of 18:24.

In only it's second conference championship meet Oakland proved it belonged in the Mid-Con placing second behind perennial powerhouse Southern Utah.  OU's Kieffer had her best finish of the year as she earned top honors with her top 5K time of 17:51.  With the finish, Kieffer was tabbed the Mid-Con Athlete of the Year.  OU's Kunst and Christina Colombe were both named second team All-Mid-Con after finishing ninth and 14th, respectively, with best times of the season (18:16 and 18:30).

Oakland's last meet of the year was the Great Lakes Regional hosted by Eastern Michigan November 11.  OU placed 24th out of 31 teams. Kieffer was the first Grizzly across the finish line at the 22:41 minute mark as she finished in 69th place out of 217 runners.

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