Cross Country

As a member of the Iowa Intercollegiate Athletic Conference, the University of Dubuque Women’s Cross Country team has established itself as a competitor and podium threat. The Spartans look to carry momentum into future seasons following a record-breaking 2014, 2015, and 2016. The Spartans Fabiola Ortiz All-Central Region runner and 2016 NCAA Division III Cross Country Championships qualifier continue to reach new heights under the direction of Head Coach Geoff Gundlach.

The Spartan Women not only enjoy success on the course, but in the classroom showcased in the All-Iowa Conference Academic Team Members. On the national level, the Spartans have been awarded USTFCCCA Division III All-Academic Honors for seven consecutive seasons (2009-2015) as well as achieving the highest team GPA in the nation in 2015.

Heritage Trail and Mines of Spain are just two of the incredible training resources the Spartans utilize within the city of Dubuque’s running community.


Maleniak Promoted to Head Cross Country Coach

Jul 26, 2018

The University of Dubuque has announced that Rich Maleniak has been promoted to Head Cross Country Coach. Maleniak served as Assistant Head Cross Country Coach for UD in 2017.

Cross Country Women Place 20th, Men 24th at NCAA Central Regional

Nov 11, 2017

The University of Dubuque cross country teams ran in blustery November weather on Saturday and the women's team placed 20th and the men's team finished 24th overall in the NCAA Division III Central Regional hosted by Carleton College. The women's race 6K race fielded 215 runners and the men's 8K race had 200 competitors

View All Cross Country News

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Name Position Event Height Weight Year Hometown
Natalie Donath Sophomore Dubuque, Iowa
Megan Ely Junior Cedar Rapids, Iowa
Edith Flores Sophomore Delavan, Wis.
Mackenzie Helgemoe Junior Rubicon, Wis.
Isabella Mazzanti Junior Woodstock, Ill.
Katria Pagel Junior Wausaw, Wis.
Danielle Johnsen Freshman Oswego, Ill.
Kayla Deegan Freshman Woodstock, Ill.
Marysa Kiely Freshman Loves Park, Ill.
Lucy Syverson Sophomore Walker, Iowa


For complete team results for University of Dubuque women's cross country click here

For complete team results for University of Dubuque men's cross country click here


Fall 2018 Schedule 

Aug. 31

Mount Mercy College 25thAnnual Mustang Gallup




Seminole Valley Park

Cedar Rapids, IA

6 p.m.

Sept. 9

Luther College 46th Annual All-American Invitational




Luther College

Decorah, IA

11:30 a.m.

Sept. 21

Augustana College 38thAnnual Brissman-Lundeen Invite




Saukie Golf Course

Rock Island, IL

5 p.m.

Sept. 28

UW-Eau Claire Blugold Invite




Whitetail Golf Course

Colfax, WI

4:15 p.m.

Oct. 5

Loras College Invitational




Dubuque Soccer Complex

Dubuque, IA

4:45 p.m.

Oct. 13

UW-Oshkosh Kollege Town Sports Invitational




Lake Breeze Golf Club

Winneconne, WI

11 a.m.

Oct. 27

IIAC Championships Hosted by Nebraska Wesleyan University




Pioneer Park

Lincoln, NE

11 a.m.

Nov. 10

NCAA Division III Central Region Championships Hosted by Wartburg College 




Max Cross Country Course

Waverly, IA

11 a.m.

Nov. 17

NCAA Division III Championships Hosted by UW-Oshkosh




Lake Breeze Golf Club

Winneconne, WI

12 p.m.

Chad Gunnelson
Chad Gunnelson
Director of Track and Field | Cross Country
Adjunct Faculty

BS, University of Dubuque

Office Phone: 563.589.3860
Office Location: 214 Mercer-Birmingham
Fax: 563.589.3425
Biography - Click to Open

Chad Gunnelson, the 2017 and 2018 IIAC Men's Indoor Track Coach of the Year and USTFCCCA Central Region Men's Coach of the Year, embarks on his seventh season leading the track & field and cross country programs at UD. The Spartans have seen unparalleled success since his arrival in 2011 and continue to improve. Along with his recent honors, Gunnelson was also recognized in 2013 as both IIAC Men's Outdoor Track Coach of the Year and UD Staff Member of the Year.

In 2018, the Spartans men's track and field team claimed their second straight Iowa Conference Indoor Championship. It was the school's 13th league title in track and field. The Spartan women also posted their best point total at the IIAC Outdoor Championships. At the national level, both the men's and women's teams achieved their highest ever NCAA ranking in 2017, the men ranked 18th and women were 22nd.  

Under the direction of Coach Gunnelson, the Spartans track & field team has had 37 NCAA qualifiers, earning 18 All-American honors and 2 National Champions (Rick Valcin, Outdoor Pole Vault, 2014 and Tanasha Atwater, Outdoor Shot Put, 2017). The Spartans have also had 76 IIAC Champions and 251 All-IIAC Performers in addition to breaking 63 school records. Off the track, the women’s team was named USTFCCCA All-Academic for the fifth straight year.

The cross-country program has had similar academic success with the men and women being named USTFCCCA All-Academic for the fifth and ninth consecutive years. On the course, they have placed 18 names to the UD Top-25 cross country performers list under Gunnelson including NCAA All-American Alec Bass (30th, 2016) and national qualifier Fabiola Ortiz (45th, 2016). 

Prior to his arrival at UD, Gunnelson, a native of Madison, Wis., spent six years as the Head Track & Field Coach at Madison East High School for both the boy’s and girl’s teams. At Madison East, Gunnelson coached 22 school record holders and back-to-back state champions in 2010 and 2011. In his final year with the Purgolders, the team earned a 3.24 GPA, had four sectional champions, and placed all four state qualifiers on the podium at the WIAA state meet, including a state champion.

Along with coaching, Gunnelson was the owner and CEO of Athletic Republic, a sports performance training facility, from 2007 to 2011 where he built Athletic Republic into the largest training facility in the Madison area and trained youth, high school, college, and professional athletes along with Olympians. 

Coach Gunnelson is actively involved in the sport beyond coaching. He serves as the central region representative on the USTFCCCA Division III track & field committee and as the IIAC coaches' chairperson. Gunnelson has spoken at high school clinichs and the USTFCCCA National Convention. He currently holds the USTFCCCA Jumps Specialist Certification, Endurance Specialist Certification, Strength & Conditioning Certification, Track & Field Technical Certification, and Program Management Certification. He is also a Level 1 certified coach with USATF, a certified performance coach with USA Weightlifting, and is certified in the Functional Movement Screen.

Coach Gunnelson resides in Potosi, Wis. with his wife Melissa, their son Dash, and his step-children Taylor and Evan.

Track and Field Coaching Record at the University of Dubuque

IIAC Finishes            Men            Women
Season Indoor   Outdoor Indoor   Outdoor
2012 4th 6th 7th 8th
2013 3rd 4th 6th 6th
2014 4th 4th 3rd 5th
2015 3rd 4th 3rd 5th
2016 5th 4th 4th 3rd
2017 1st 4th  4th 4th 
2018 1st 4th

Richard Maleniak
Richard Maleniak
Head Cross Country Coach / Assistant Track and Field Coach

MS, Illinois State University
BS, UW-Eau Claire

Office Phone: 563.589.3714
Office Location: 215 Mercer-Birmingham
Biography - Click to Open

The University of Dubuque has announced that Rich Maleniak has been promoted to Head Cross Country Coach prior to the 2018 season. He joined the Spartans as assistant head cross country coach and assistant track & field coach in 2017. Maleniak will lead the middle distance and distance runners for the program.

Prior to UD, Maleniak, a 4-time USTFCCCA Central Region Assistant Coach of the Year lead the women’s middle distance and distance runners at the University of St. Thomas (UST) for five seasons. Throughout his tenure at UST, Maleniak helped runners gain conference, region, and national success in cross country and track and field covering events from 600 to 10,000 meters.

At UST, Maleniak coached 29 individuals and relays to MIAC conference titles and 57 all-conference finishes. On the national level, Maleniak coached athletes to 20 - NCAA All-American performances in individual or relay events including back-to-back national titles in the distance medley relay (2015 & 2016) and a national championship in the indoor mile (2016). He has coached four USTFCCCA Regional Athlete of the Year award winners.  

Maleniak helped lead the UST women's cross country team to the NCAA Championships for three consecutive seasons (2014-2016). He also coached three individuals to All-American performances at the NCAA DIII Cross Country National Championships, an 8th and 22nd place finish in 2012 and 13th place finish in 2014.

Before joining the St. Thomas staff in 2012, Maleniak spent the previous two seasons as a graduate assistant coach for the cross country and track and field teams at NCAA DI Illinois State University.  While at ISU, he was responsible for on and off campus recruiting and implementing workouts for the distance runners.  In 2011, women's cross country won their first Missouri Valley Conference title in program history. The Redbird distance crew also had six individual or relay Missouri Valley Conference champions in cross country and track and eight NCAA Regional Qualifiers. 

Maleniak began his college coaching career at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire as an assistant coach for the men's and women's track and field and cross country programs. Maleniak was in charge of developing workout plans for the 800 meter training group. He coached two NCAA All-Americans and his group set new school records in both men's and women's 800 meter run and men’s 4x800 meter relay.  He assisted with the women's cross country team as it improved from placing 12th  at the NCAA Championship meet in 2006, to 8th place in 2007, and 5th place in 2008.  

Maleniak earned his bachelor’s degree from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire in Chemistry with an emphasis in business in 2002, and earned a master’s degree in Sports Management from Illinois State University in 2011.  As a competitor himself, he competed in five national championship competitions and was a 2-time NCAA Division III Track All-American. Maleniak also served as a team captain and was named MVP of the track team after his senior season. He is the UW-Eau Claire school record holder in the indoor mile and outdoor 1500m. He also holds a U.S.A. Track and Field Level I certificate.

Past Seasons

Select a season for historical information and statistics 

2017 Record Book