Janusiak makes valiant run at All-American in 10,000

Lawrence track action Josh Janusiak
Josh Janusiak finished ninth in the 10,000 meters at the NCAA Division III Championships.

GENEVA, Ohio -- Lawrence University track star Josh Janusiak made a valiant run at All-American on Thursday at the NCAA Division III Championships, but it wasn't meant to be.

Janusiak finished ninth, one spot shy of earning All-America honors, in the 10,000 meters at the SPIRE Institute with a time of 31:11.81. The senior from South Milwaukee, Wis., passed three runners over the final three laps but couldn't track down Carleton College's Tris Dodge, who finished eighth in 30:59.36.

"Overall, I would have loved to finish one place up, at least, but I think I raced my hardest and it was a good cap to my college running career," said Janusiak, who already owns All-America honors in both track and cross country.

Defending champion Dhruvil Patel of North Central College won the title again in 30:14.05.

A lead pack of six runners broke away, and Janusiak was as high as seventh place but had dropped back to as far as 12th place. Over the final three laps, Janusiak dug deep and passed several runners, including one about 50 meters from the finish, to secure ninth place. Janusiak's final lap was his second-fastest of the race at 1:10.95.

"You'd like to be All-American, but I was really proud of the way he finished," Lawrence coach Jason Fast said. "He had a great last lap. Even in his last race, he was trying to do something better. He was trying to have a bitter kick than he normally does and he did."

This was Janusiak's second consecutive trip to the NCAA outdoor championships and his fifth overall appearance at a national championship. 

"He's left a great legacy that his teammates can look up to and see that's what we can be," Fast said of Janusiak. "Now they see what we can be and compete at this level."

Janusiak gave credit to those closest to him for his success at Lawrence.

"I've had a lot of fun (at Lawrence), which honestly is ideal. I wasn't burned out on running. I still have a huge passion for running, and that's definitely a big plus," Janusiak said. "Every team, every combination of teammates have been wonderful. The support has been great and my family has been so supportive. I'm really glad I had such a good coach and was able to go so far and be so competitive on so many different levels."