CU men’s cross-country finished second as a team at the NCAA Mountain Region Championship, while the women’s team came in third.
The goal of the race for both teams on Saturday was to run just hard enough to earn a spot at the NCAA Championship in Terre Haute, Ind. next Saturday. The men’s second place qualified them automatically, and the women will very likely earn one of 13 at-large bids for the race.
“With the poll system the way it is, there is no question [the women’s team] will get through,” said head coach Mark Wetmore in a news release
The men’s team, who was ranked fourth in the region going into the race, finished 21 points behind first place team New Mexico. The third and fourth place teams, BYU and Northern Arizona University, were 14 and 22 points behind Colorado respectively.
The Colorado women were only six points behind first place New Mexico and four points behind second place Texas Tech, while they beat the fourth place team, BYU, by a decisive 98 points.
The Buffs’ top five men all finished within 25 seconds of each other in the race. Sophomore Joe Bosshard and junior Andy Wacker came in ninth and tenth respectively, finishing half a second apart with times of 30:08.0 and 30:08.5 on the ten-kilometer course respectively.
“The men exceeded our expectations a little bit… [they] ran a very careful and conservative race,” Wetmore said in a news release.
Sophomore Aric Van Halen came in 14th in 30:18.3, followed in 16th place by Matt Tebo in 30:19.8. In 19th was junior Christian Thompson in 30:23.7.
All five runners earned all-region honors for scoring in the top 25 in the race, as did the top four runners on the women’s team.
On the women’s side, sophomore Laura Tremblay came in third overall, finishing the six-kilometer course in 20:23.9. Tremblay ran conservatively according to team strategy.
“The goal was to make nationals… as easily as possible… without too much effort,” Tremblay said in a news release.
Senior Laura Thweatt earned eighth in 20:42.7, moving up six spots from her previous career-best 14th place finish at Regionals as a sophomore.
Redshirt freshman Shalaya Kipp and junior Emma Coburn also ran well, coming in tenth and 11th respectively with times of 20:48.2 and 20:49.2. The final scorer for the Buffs women, junior Katie Cumming, crossed the line in 21:28.3 for a 27th place finish.
The Buffs will head to the NCAA Championship in Terre Haute, Ind. next Saturday, Nov. 22. Coach Wetmore said he hopes the teams’ conservative efforts this weekend will leave them with enough energy to make a final push at Nationals.
“Nobody had a bad day and we are all healthy… now it’s back to work,” Wetmore said.
Contact CU Independent Staff Writer Caryn Maconi at Caryn.Maconi@colorado.edu.