Led by an eighth-place finish by Bethany Hasz, the Gophers placed fifth at the NCAA women's cross-country championships on Monday in Stillwater, Okla. It was the highest NCAA team finish in program history.

Minnesota scored 239 points, marking the seventh top-12 team finish in program history and just the fourth top-10 finish for the Gophers women at the NCAA national meet, dating to 1983. Minnesota's previous best finish saw the Gophers come in ninth in the team standings in 2005. At the 2019 championships, the Gophers were 28th.

"I knew that what we did at the Big Ten meet at the end of January was just the tip of the iceberg of what we would be capable of six weeks later," Gophers coach Sarah Hopkins said.

On Friday, Hasz finished as national runner-up in the 5,000 meters at the NCAA indoor championships in Fayetteville, Ark.

Less than 72 hours after her NCAA runner-up finish on the track, Hasz was back in action leading the Gophers to their fifth-place team finish with a time of 20:25.2 for the 6-kilometer course at the Oklahoma State Cross Country Course. Her eighth-place individual finish is the second-highest NCAA showing by a Gopher behind only Megan Duwell, who placed seventh at the 2009 NCAA cross-country championships.

Gophers Abby Kohut-Jackson (45th), Anastasia Korzenowski (59th), and Jaycie Thomsen (70th) also recorded career-high NCAA finishes.

Pittman, Ramler honored by Big Ten

Gophers volleyball middle blocker Regan Pittman was chosen the Big Ten's defensive player of the week. In two matches against Illinois this past weekend, Pittman averaged 2.63 blocks per set. On Friday, Pittman added eight blocks. On Saturday, Pittman followed with a 13-block performance in just three sets, setting a school record for blocks in a three-set match.

•Lexy Ramler was named Big Ten gymnast of the week for the fourth consecutive week. The St. Michael native recorded her third career perfect 10 on beam and fourth overall perfect score. She also scored a 10 on vault earlier this season at the Big Five Meet in addition to two perfect 10s on beam last season.

The senior is currently tied for No. 1 in the nation on beam, No. 2 on bars, tied for No. 4 on vault, No. 23 on floor and No. 2 overall in the all-around.

Basketball finalists

The Mr. Basketball award committee has named its 10 finalists for the 2021 award. They are Ryan Dufault of Waseca, Lamar Grayson of Richfield, Chet Holmgren of Minnehaha Academy, Trey Longstreet of Delano, Andrew Morgan of Waseca, Francis Nwaokorie of Champlin Park, Noah Paulson of Duluth East, Henry Shannon of Eastview, Joshua Strong of Champlin Park and Will Tschetter of Stewartville.

Five finalists will be announced on March 30.