Ige an All-American, Wildcat Women 30th at Nationals
Nov. 23, 2009
TERRE HAUTE, Ind. - Mohamud Ige was running in the last race of his cross country career - and he made it count.
The senior ran a personal record time at 10,000-meters in Terre Haute, Ind. to take 38th place and All-American accolades at the NCAA National Championships early Monday afternoon in Terre Haute, Ind.
Ige finished in 30:20.2 in just the second 10k race of the year to beat his previous personal best at the distance - set at last weekend's NCAA West Regional - by over 20 seconds.
Ige, who shocked many people at that Regional race with his ninth place finish, was determined to come to this weekend's meet and show that he belonged in this race. He got out of the blocks quickly and ran up front with the leaders for a good portion of the race.
All-American accolades - awarded by the United States Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Association - are given to the first forty individuals who cross the line, setting them apart as the best of hundreds of individuals who have competed at the NCAA Division I level this season.
Ige will now look to the track and field season a little over a month from now to keep his recent hot streak going and add some much-needed depth to the UA's long distance runners.
On the women's side, the UA team competed in just their first NCAA National Meet in eight years. The team pulled together for a 30th-place finish, establishing their climb to the top of the NCAA despite their youth.
For the first time this season, a runner not named Maggie Callahan led the squad. Freshman Jenn Bergman was the first Wildcat across the line, finishing the 6000-meter race in 21:35. The high school Foot Locker finalist has been an impressive addition to the Arizona squad this season and showed just how important she will be as the years come.
Callahan, a junior, was not far behind the freshman as she finished the race in 21:38 and as the second Arizona athlete to finish.
Freshman Cami Jackson was next for Arizona finishing in a very respectable time of 21:43. Jackson's point scoring finish capped off a big day for the family, as her sister had 20 points, 5 steals and 4 assists to lead the Arizona women's basketball team to victory against Ole Miss.
Freshman Liz Apgar (22:04) and sophomore Hanna Henson (22:06) rounded out the point scoring individuals for the UA.
UA assistant coach Erin Dawson said after the race that it was an impressive season for Arizona, not only because they got to the first National Championship in nearly a decade, but because they did it with no seniors and with four freshmen running in their top seven runners.
The squad will return every member next season and the bar will be set that much higher for a team that maybe exceeded a lot of exceptions to begin the season.
The team will now have a little over a month to recover from their long season and focus on the indoor track and field season which kicks off in the middle of January.