Sarah Healy was a victim of the treacherous under-foot conditions at the European Cross Country Championships at the Beekse Bergen Safari Park in Tilburg, Netherlands.
The 17-year-old was a leading medal hope was in a prominent position in the under-20 event when she collided with a Spanish competitor and fell and another runner fell on top of her.
She got back to her feet and battled back to finish ninth, one position behind her Irish teammate Emma O'Brien.
Ireland finished sixth in the team event but would have claimed a medal if they had bettered their overall score by four positions.
Speaking after the race, Healy said: "I'm not sure what happened. It's just the nature of cross country."
The Irish under-20 men's team went one better by coming fifth overall with Darragh McElhinney the first Irishman home in 16th.
Ryan Forsyth produced a big performance to finish fourth in the under-23 race in his first race in the Irish singlet.
"I like to race aggressively. I believe I should be up there and do should the team. It’s an honour to wear the vest," he said.
The senior men's team finished seventh with Sean Tobin producing a fantastic run to come home in 10th.
The senior women's team were 11th overall. Sarah Treacy was the first Irishwoman home in 26th.
Ireland under-23 women's team came ninth.