From June 19-23 and June 26-30, USCBAthletics.com will count down the top 10 moments of the 2016-17 school year for Sand Shark Athletics. Today’s entry is No. 4 on the list.
Entering her final season of cross country competition, Betsy Douglas already was the most-decorated runner in USCB history.
She added plenty more honors to the list last fall.
Douglas’ special season began with individual titles at the Palmetto State XC Festival and the Winthrop Adidas Invitational, where she outpaced runners from four NCAA Division I teams – including the entire University of South Carolina lineup.
Douglas finally found a race she couldn’t win at the USC Upstate Invitational, where she finished fourth overall behind three NCAA Division I runners. Douglas shattered her own school-record 5K time by 32 seconds when she finished second at the Asics Sand Shark Invitational presented by Mortgage Network with a time of 17:18, and she easily won the Sun Conference Championship two weeks later on the same course.
After being named the Sun Conference Runner of the Year and Champion of Character Award winner, Douglas earned NAIA All-America honors for the second consecutive year when she ran a remarkable time of 17:21 on a difficult course in Elsah, Illinois, to finish fourth overall.
“What can you say about Betsy?,” USCB coach Larry Kimball said at the time. “She did awesome. She was running ninth with a kilometer to go, and she turned it on. The last 250 meters she was in full flight and reeling in third.”
Douglas finished her three-year cross country career at USCB with the seven fastest times in program history and eight of the top 10, but she will return for one more season of track & field eligibility.