West Region Meet Next Stop For Cross Country Clubs
Links associated with this release:
NCAA West Regional Meet Central
NCAA West Regional Live Scoring
The first step toward the NCAA Championships takes place Friday as the league’s cross country clubs compete in the NCAA West Regional meet.
The Haggin Oaks Golf Course will be the site for the meet as 39 women’s teams and 31 men’s teams will compete. This is the second race that Haggin Oaks has seen this season, previously hosting the Capital Cross Challenge which served as the West Region preview. The women’s competition will consist of a 6K at 11 am, while the men will compete in a grueling 10K at 12 pm, the same distances which will be run at the NCAA Championships. Live results are available HERE.
The top two teams in each gender at each of the nine Regionals automatically advances to the NCAA Championship, making for 18 teams gaining automatic qualification. The next 13 at-large qualifiers will be determined by a process of counting up points that teams earned with wins over other NCAA qualifiers throughout the year, with the order of finish at Regionals also factoring into the selection process. All competing clubs and individuals will converge on Terre Haute, Ind., for the national meet on November 19 at Wabash Valley Family Sports Center.
• Cal Poly returned to a familiar place at the Big West Cross Country Championships, sweeping the men’s and women’s titles in impressive fashion on the shores of O’ahu at the Kahuku Golf Course.
The dual championship was the first in Championship history since 2013, when the Mustangs also accomplished the feat at their home course.
The Cal Poly men claimed the title with 18 points, the fewest at the Championship since the squad put up a perfect 15 points in 2007. Second place belonged to two-time defending champion UC Santa Barbara with 53 points, while Cal State Fullerton recorded its highest finish since 1993 in third place with 83 points. Fourth went to UC Irvine with 98 points, fifth to Long Beach State with 163 points and sixth belonged to UC Davis with 165 points. Rounding out the men’s standings were UC Riverside and CSUN with 169 and 202 points, respectively.
The women’s 6K race was won by the Mustangs with 27 points, the lowest winning score at the Championships since UCSB put up 26 points in 2006. Second place went to UC Davis with 72 points, while the current Gaucho squad was third with 96 points. Just one point behind them was Cal State Fullerton with 97 points, the first top four finish for the Titans since 2008. Host Hawai’i was fifth with 124 points, UC Riverside sixth with 129 points and UC Irvine seventh with 197 points. CSUN (224) and Long Beach State (246) completed the scoring on the women’s side.
The 8K men’s race was won by Cal Poly junior Clayton Hutchins in an impressive time of 24:36.1. The Mustangs swept the top three as senior Swarnjit Boyal (24:46.0) and junior Alex Heuchert (24:50.1) went 2-3.
A year after finishing second at the Championships, Cal Poly sophomore Peyton Bilo took home the individual crown after crossing the finish line in 21:04.1. UCSB junior Jenna Hinkle was second in 21:21.5, while last year’s individual champion Faith Makau of UC Riverside came in third at 21:29.1.
• For the first time in Big West history, a school swept all six cross country awards as Cal Poly took home all the hardware after an outstanding 2016 regular season.
On the men’s side, junior Clayton Hutchins was named Athlete of the Year, Justin Robinson claimed the Freshman of the Year and Mark Conover earned the Coach of the Year nod. The women’s awards were headlined by sophomore Peyton Bilo as she claimed the Athlete of the Year. Her teammate Cate Ratliff garnered Freshman of the Year honors and Conover also claimed the Coach of the Year honor.
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