Ely’s Prigge a record-setter
by Tom Coombe
Like all other college athletes in the country, Ryne Prigge saw her spring season come to an abrupt and early end because of the coronavirus pandemic.
But before the year was cut short, the Ely native earned a spot in the record book at Bemidji State University.
Three times in a matter of just over a month, Prigge set new BSU records in the 800 meter run while competing on the women’s track team at the school.
Prigge completed the 800 in 2:16.91 at the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference indoor championships, held Feb. 28-29 at Mankato.
A sophomore at BSU, Prigge place fifth in the conference while breaking a school record that she had established just a few weeks earlier.
It was Jan. 25 when Prigge finished first at the BSU Indoor Open, winning the 800 and setting a new school-best time of 2:18.04.
In between, Prigge took third at a North Dakota meet in 2:17.18, further lowering the school record time.
Prigge also runs relays for the BSU track team and was part of a ninth-place, four-by-400 relay at the conference meet.
The Beavers were gearing up for a series of outdoor meets when the NCAA canceled all spring sports championships. Universities and colleges across the country subsequently scrapped the rest of their 2020 seasons.
A former multi-sport standout at Ely High School, where she advanced to state in cross country, track and Nordic skiing and was named Arrowhead Conference Athlete of the Year, Prigge has quickly made her mark at Bemidji State, an NCAA Division II college.
Last fall, Prigge led the way for BSU at the NSIC’s women’s cross country championships.
Prigge took 37th in the 6,000-meter race at Wayne, Neb., the best of any BSU runner.
Earlier in the season, Prigge set a personal record with a time of 18:59.1 on a 5K course in Florida, where the Beavers took part in the 2019 Disney Cross Country Classic.
At Bemidji, Prigge is following in the footsteps of her former track and cross country coach in Ely - Jayne Dusich. Dusich set numerous cross country and track records at Bemidji and is part of the school’s as well as the NSIC’s athletic hall of fame.