Bethanie Brown is on the move.

Brown, who graduated from Waterville Senior High School last spring as the top distance runner in the state, will attend nationally recognized Iowa State after she asked for, and was subsequently granted, her release from the University of Connecticut.

Brown asked to be released from her scholarship 30 days ago after UConn head cross country coach and assistant track and field coach Andrea Grove-McDonough left to take a similar job at Iowa State.

“She was the one I felt the most comfortable with,” Brown said. “It’s been a crazy summer. UConn wouldn’t release me until I talked to the new coach. But I chose UConn because of (Grove-McDonough). She recruited me. I just really look up to her.”

Grove-McDonough coached at UConn for five years. At UConn, Grove-McDonough helped the women’s cross country team earn its first national ranking, in 2011. She guided the Huskies to a second-place finish at the Big East championships last season as well.

Grove-McDonough’s move to Iowa State brings her a little closer to her home in Winnipeg, Manitoba.
Brown said she will head to Ames, Iowa sometime next week.

“I’m excited,” said Brown, who added she received five full scholarship offers after she was released from her scholarship at UConn. “Classes start in two weeks and the preseason starts Monday. I’m excited for the opportunity.”

Brown enjoyed a dominant season for the Waterville girls track and field team. She helped the Purple Panthers win their seventh consecutive Class B state title.

Brown won the 800-meter run in a Class B record 2 minutes, 16.5 seconds. She also won the 1,600, 3,200 and anchored the victorious 4×400 relay team.

After the state competition, she then trained for the New Balance Nationals in Greensboro, N.C. Brown earned All-American status when she finished the 5,000 in 16:41.84, which was good for third place. She also finished eighth in the 2-mile run with a time of 10:24.44 seconds.

Brown will join an Iowa State cross country team that will try to win its third consecutive NCAA Midwest Regional title this fall.

The Cyclones finished 11th at the NCAA Division I championships.

“I’m looking forward to going there,” Brown said. “It’s been kind of a hectic summer.”

Bill Stewart — 621-5640
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