Former H-DNL champ qualifies for NCAA nationals

Photo by UC Santa Cruz Cross Country – Riley Martel-Phillips reacts after her second-place finish at this past weekend’s D-III West Regional race in Washington.

Former Arcata Tiger Riley Martel-Phillips is headed to the NCAA national championships in cross country for the first time.

Martel-Phillips, who runs for UC Santa Cruz, placed second at the Division-III West Regional championships in Spokane, Wash., over the weekend to earn automatic qualification.

The former H-DNL champion finished the 6K course in a time of 21 minutes 52.8 seconds and tied the best-ever finish by a Banana Slug.

Her performance helped secure a third-place finish for the Santa Cruz women, their highest ever finish in Regions.

It marks the second straight year she has received All-Region honors.

Martel-Phillips will have plenty of company for the trip to nationals after the Santa Cruz women received an at-large team berth for the NCAA championships on Sunday.

It is the first time ever the Banana Slugs have qualified for nationals.

Martel-Phillips was a three-time H-DNL champion, winning in 2016, 2017 and 2018.

The NCAA meet will be held in East Lansing, Michigan, this weekend.

UC Santa Cruz Athletics – Riley Martel-Phillips

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