Cross Country: Men win NCAA South Region title

Photo by Jonathan Clark / Sidelines Archives

Story by Teylor Hines / Contributing Writer

The 21st-ranked Middle Tennessee men’s cross country team came home victorious with its first NCAA South Regional title in program history. With the win, the Blue Raiders punched their ticket to their second straight trip to the NCAA Championships.

The Blue Raiders (71) surpassed both SEC and ACC opponents in Ole Miss (76) and Alabama (95), as well as Florida State (128) and Tennessee (165) to take the top spot.

Jacob Choge finished in third place, clocking in his personal-best time of 29:50.9 in the 10k. Middle Tennessee claimed two more spots in the top 10, as Kigen Chemadi (30:14.0) placed fifth and Sampson Laari (30:57.6) finished in 10th. Both runners finished with personal-best times.

Amos and Geoffry Cheruiyot finished in the top 30 for Middle to help them earn the South Regional title by five points over Ole Miss.

Choge, Chemadi, Laari and Amos Cheruiyot earned All-Region honors for a second consecutive year.

For the Blue Raider women, Rachel Kigen came in 79th place with a time of 21:40:4 in the 6k, a new personal best. Gladys Kipchumba finished in 22:26.5 with Sharon Kibiwott (22:44.1) not far behind. They both ran their personal bests, too.

The men’s cross country team will be in action again on Saturday in Louisville, Kentucky, for the NCAA Championships.

To contact Sports Editor Rusty Ellis, email sports@mtsusidelines.com.

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