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UMM's Keller named Athlete of the Year

University of Minnesota, Morris cross country runner Linda Keller has been named Central Region Female Athlete of the Year, announced Nov. 15 by the United States Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA).

A junior from Hawick, Keller claimed the Central Region title on Nov. 12, beating her closest competition by 12 seconds after leading the entire way. The region championship was her first, after finishing third as a sophomore last season.

Just two weeks earlier she also claimed her third straight Upper Midwest Athletic Conference (UMAC) crown, taking the league championship in each of her three seasons.

She won the regional with a time of 21:44.6, her second best mark of the year after breaking her own school record on Oct. 15 with a 21:17.70.

She is one of just eight honorees from across the country to be named Regional Athlete of the Year, and is also the UMAC's only representative on the All-Region Team.

Keller will wrap up her season at the NCAA Championship meet this Saturday, running in Oshkosh, Wis. Keller will be looking to claim her second straight All-America certificate, after finishing 19th last season.