Women’s track & field and cross country add 15 recruits

Megan Ryan

The Minnesota women's track and field and cross country teams added 15 freshmen for the 2012-2013 seasons. The recruiting class hails from four Midwestern states – Minnesota, Iowa, Wisconsin and Illinois – and includes multiple high school state participants and champions.

Wisconsin produced the largest number of future Gophers. The seven athletes make up almost half of the entire incoming class.

On the track, the Gophers recruited cross country and middle-distance runner Caitlin Dillon of Germantown, distance runner Haley Johnson of Plymouth, and sprinter Kat Keller of New Richmond.

In the field, pole vaulter Cami Gilson of Arrowhead, thrower Kailee Kamps of Belmont, as well as multi-event athletes Audra Winter of Manitowoc and Jessica Powers Lake Mills will suit up in maroon and gold.

The Minnesota natives are mostly track competitors and all either middle-distance or distance runners.

For distance, the Gophers signed Jamie Piepenburg of Alexandria, Melissa Cabak of Plymouth and Taylor Mikkalson of Mantorville. For the slightly shorter races, Haylie Zenner of Fergus Falls and Kate Shelerud of Esko will represent the home state.

The one field athlete recruit from Minnesota is Angie Guenther of White Bear Lake. Guenther excelled at the discus throw and shot put in high school but will also pick up the hammer and javelin in college.

The lone representatives from Iowa and Illinois will add to the sprinting and throwing teams at Minnesota. Erin Hawkins of Des Moines will most likely compete in the 100-meter dash, 200, 400 and any sprint relays.

Autumn Miller of Roscoe is a thrower that will add valuable experience to the Gophers lineup. Most throwers usually compete only in the shot put and discus throw in high school. Miller already has two years of hammer throw experience before her first year of collegiate competition.

The 15 new team members will replace the 18 outgoing seniors. Next year's roster will include 98 athletes, three less than this year.