After putting up a stellar fight at the NCAA Mountain Regionals on Friday, the UTEP men’s cross country team qualifies to compete at the NCAA Championships next weekend, as announced today by the NCAA Division I Men’s and Women’s Track and Field Committee. This is the third-straight year the Miners head to the championships as a team.
The Miners finished in fifth-place at the NCAA Mountain Regionals on Friday with a total of 122 points in a highly competitive field. UTEP ran against opponents who receive national accolades, ranked by the United States Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA), including: No. 1 Northern Arizona (60 points), No. 2 Colorado (70 points), and No 3. BYU (79 points), who all finished in the top-three spots, respectively.
The Miners had three runners complete the 10K in the top-25 to earn recognition by the USTFCCCA. Jonah Koech, Antony Kosgei, and Cosmas Boit each received NCAA Division I Cross Country All-Region honors for their display of notable athleticism. 2016 NCAA DIVISION I XC ALL-REGION HONOREES
Koech was the first from UTEP to cross the line in second-place (30:58.6). Kosgei (13th/ 31:12.8), and Boit, (19th/ 31:18.6) followed in behind Koech.
From the UTEP women’s team, Winny Koech will represent the Miners at the NCAA Championships. The freshman displayed superlative efforts as she finished in second-place at regionals with a season-best readout of 20:17.1 in the 6K. The standout athlete secured a position at the championships as an individual competitor, being the first NCAA Championships qualifier for the UTEP women’s cross country team since 2012 (Risper Kimaiyo).
Winny Koech also received All-Region honors, in addition to fellow teammate sophomore Lilian Koech who ran a season-best 6K time of 20:54.30 to take 24th place.
NCAA Championships will be held on Nov. 19 in Terre Haute, Ind., hosted by Indiana State University.