FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Colorado track and field redshirt senior Sage Hurta claimed the 2021 NCAA women’s mile title in Fayetteville, Ark., Saturday evening with a winning mark of 4 minutes and 30.58 seconds.

Hurta ran an intelligent race, sitting behind in fourth through the first half. Around the 500-meter mark, Hurta quickly positioned herself of Krissy Gear’s shoulder from Arkansas, and a few meters later was gapping the field quickly. By the time she reached the finish line with 400 meters remaining, Hurta had already built a five-meter lead.

Gear went with Hurta as best she could, but Hurta’s 2-minute 800 speed was on full display as she dropped a 32.07 lap from 400 to 200 meters, faster than any lap anyone else ran in the race. She then added an extra measure of speed with the bell lap in 31.13 seconds. She finished with a final 800 time of 2:11.

“That was the strategy to go out easy and then take control,” said Hurta following the race. “Over the second half, I knew I was strong and wanted to push it and make sure I was in position to win.”

Hurta becomes just the second Buff to ever win the mile indoors for Colorado, joining Emma Coburn’s title in 2013. She is the 24th individual national champion for Colorado in track and field and her title is the 19th indoor title.

“The stubbornness that got me into injury trouble in all of 2020 was the same stubbornness I had with my cross training and my rehab,” Hurta said. “My comeback and going into this weekend I knew this was the opportunity that got me through those really hard days where I didn’t want to workout, didn’t want to get on the alter or get in the pool. I said I’ve got to make the most of this I’ve been hanging onto this for a year and a half just to get back to competing for a NCAA Championships which ever since my 2019 outdoor season I knew was a realistic possibility.”