Colorado men, Arizona women claim Pac-12 titles
LOUISVILLE, Colo. -- The top-ranked COLORADO men turned in a winning performance for the third-consecutive year at the Pac-12 Cross Country Championships held at Coal Creek Golf Course in Louisville, Colo., on Saturday, while the ARIZONA women claimed its first-ever league crown in front of a crowd of 5,123. In the individual races, OREGON’s Edward Cheserek crossed the finish line first with a time of 24:36, while STANFORD’s Aisling Cuffe won the women’s race with a time of 21:04.
The tape-delayed coverage of the Pac-12 Men's and Women's Cross Country Championships will air on the Pac-12 Networks on Monday, Nov. 4 at 6:30 p.m. PT. Check pac-12.com and local listings for times and air dates. For news, feature stories and more of the day visit the Pac-12 Cross Country Championships page.
The Buffs, who were hosting their first-ever Pac-12 Championship event in any sport, placed five runners in the top 10 and scored just 28 points to claim the 2013 crown. The Ducks had three placers in the top 10, scoring 54 points to come in second in the team competition, followed by the third-place Cardinal with 79 points. ARIZONA STATE, which was receiving votes heading into the meet, edged out No. 25 WASHINGTON for fourth place with 140 points. UW scored 142 with the help of Aaron Nelson’s (25:01) eighth-place finish, one of only two runners not from Colorado or Oregon to place in the top 10.
Scoring 151 points, WASHINGTON STATE placed sixth in the team competition, just one point ahead of seventh-place UCLA (152). ARIZONA scored 149 points and CALIFORNIA scored 220 to round out the field.
Only three seconds separated the top nine runners through the first 6k of the race. Cheserek, a freshman from Newark, N.J., pulled away in the final 2k to claim the individual title, finishing six seconds ahead of Stanford’s Jim Rosa (24:42) who hails from West Windsor, N.J. Blake Theroux (Chesapeake, Va.) was the top Colorado finisher, crossing the finish line in third place with a time of 24:47.
In the women’s team competition, the No. 1-ranked Wildcats edged Colorado, 69-75, to claim the program’s first-ever league title. The 69 points are the most ever to be scored by a winning women’s team. The Wildcats had three runners in the top 10, including second-place finisher and Pac-12 Scholar-Athlete of the Year Elvin Kibet (Eldoret, Kenya). The Buffs had four top 15 finishers and threatened UA’s title. The third and fourth place competition was also close, as Washington edged defending champion Oregon, 111-113. With two runners in the top 10, Stanford rounded out the top five in the standings, scoring 129 points.
ASU was sixth in the team standings with a score of 138. Kelsey Smith’s (South Lake Tahoe, Calif.) seventh-place showing with a time of 21:27 led UCLA to seventh with 173 points, UTAH was eighth with 207 points, and CALIFORNIA was ninth with 213 points. In 10th place was WASHINGTON STATE (260), followed by OREGON STATE (269) and USC (346).
Aisling Cuffe (Cornwall-on-the-Hudson, N.Y.) was tied for fourth at the 4k mark but turned on the pressure during the final stretch, winning by a nine-second margin, posting a time of 21:04 in the 6k-race to claim Stanford’s second-straight individual women’s title and Cuffe’s first of her career. CALIFORNIA’s Kelsey Santisteban (Castro Valley, Calif.) was third with a time of 21:18, finishing three seconds behind Kibet. An Olympian in the London Olympics in the steeplechase, Shalaya Kipp (Salt Lake City) was the top placer for the Buffs, coming in eighth place with a time of 21:33.
The Pac-12 Championships featured 10 ranked teams in all, with half the women’s field being ranked in the latest USTFCCCA Coaches Poll. In addition to the No. 1 Buffs, the Duck men were ranked fourth, followed by Stanford at No. 13 and Washington at No. 25. On the women’s side, the Wildcats led the way at No. 1, with Oregon ranking 12th, Washington ranking 13th and Colorado ranking 16th. Stanford was 20th in the rankings heading into the competition, with Arizona State garnering a No. 26 ranking.
All teams look to the NCAA Regional meet on Friday, Nov. 15 with the West regional taking place in Sacramento, Calif., and the Mountain regional in Ogden, Utah. Teams and individuals that advance go on to compete for the NCAA Championship in Terre Haute, Ind., on Saturday, Nov. 23.
PAC-12 CROSS COUNTRY CHAMPIONSHIPS
Saturday, Nov. 2, 2013
Coal Creek Golf Course, Louisville, Colo.
INDIVIDUAL WOMEN’S RESULTS
|1.||Aisling Cuffe, STAN||21:04|
|2.||Elvin Kibet, ARIZ||21:15|
|3.||Kelsey Santisteban, CAL||21:18|
|4.||Shelby Houlihan, ASU||21:19|
|5.||Kayla Beattie, ARIZ||21:20|
|6.||Nicci Corbin, ARIZ||21:23|
|7.||Kelsey Smith, UCLA||21:27|
|8.||Shalaya Kipp, COLO||21:33|
|9.||Jessica Tonn, STAN||21:37|
|10.||Carrie Verdon, COLO||21:42|
INDIVIDUAL MEN’S RESULTS
|1.||Edward Cheserek, ORE||24:36|
|2.||Jim Rosa, STAN||24:42|
|3.||Blake Theroux, COLO||24:47|
|4.||Connor Winter, COLO||24:49|
|5.||Ben Saarel, COLO||24:53|
|6.||Parker Stinson, ORE||24:56|
|7.||Pierce Murphy, COLO||25:00|
|8.||Aaron Nelson, WASH||25:01|
|9.||Ammar Moussa, COLO||25:15|
|10.||Mac Fleet, ORE||25:23|