ARLINGTON, Texas -- Recent UTA graduate Craig Lautenslager cruised to his first national title Sunday at the New Zealand Cross Country Championships.
Lautenslager led throughout en route to a 17-second victory. His time in the 10k was 32:58. The product of Nelson, New Zealand's previous best finish in the senior men's race was fifth in 2015.
"I just got better every day, every year," Lautenslager told the local media regarding his time at UTA. "I am pretty relieved. I really wanted to win a (New Zealand) title."
Lautenslager graduated from UTA in May, where he totaled six individual conference titles between cross country and track. He also owns three school records, and earned a spot in the 2016 NCAA Cross Country Championships, a feat that had not been accomplished by a UTA runner in nearly two decades.
In June, he became the first Maverick men's distance runner to earn All-America mention when he finished 13th in the 5000 meters at the NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Championships.
"This is tremendous for Craig," UTA coach John Sauerhage said. "To become a national champion was one of his goals, and we look forward to seeing everything else he can accomplish going forward."
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