Cougs Run at Pac-12 Championships
UNIVERSITY PLACE, Wash. – The Washington State women's and men's cross country programs were in action Friday at the Pac-12 Championships, running at Chambers Creek Park, just south of Seattle.
The Washington State women's program, combined for 164 points in the race, finishing in fifth place overall at the Pac-12 Championships, edging out the Utes of Utah who have received NCAA votes in the latest poll. The fifth place finish is the best conference finish since 2008, and the highest placement since the conference went to 12 teams overall.
Erin Mullins led the way for the Cougs on the women's side, finishing 13th overall with a time of 19:56.90. Mullins also earns Second Team All-Pac-12 honors with her impressive effort today. The last WSU women's runner to earn All-Pac-12 honors was NCAA All-American Vallery Korir who also placed 13th during the 2017 Pac-12 Championships.
Just behind Erin, was teammate Neema Kimtai in 20th overall with a time of 20:09.10. Washington State saw Zorana Grujic cross the finish line in 46th overall at 20:58.70, and Jelena Grujic not far behind in 52nd place at 21:08.70. Alaina Stone Boggs checked in at 61st with a time of 21:24.40, and Caroline Jerotich followed her teammate in 68th with a time of 21:41.80. Rounding out the remaining Cougs on the day included Kiyena Beatty at 76th (22:02.60), Kerstin Ly at 78th (22:10.10), Pia Richards at 82nd (22:19.60), and finally Samantha Boyle finishing in 84th place (22:43.60).
"It was an amazing performance by our women's team and a glimpse into a very bright future," Head Coach Wayne Phipps said. "Erin Mullins ran a very gutsy race. Anytime you are all-conference in Pac-12 XC is awesome. And she will definitely receive strong consideration for an NCAA individual bid. Our women's team should also be strongly considered for a bid to NCAA's as fifth in the Pac-12 has, historically, always gone to the NCAA Championships."
Stanford took home the top prize as a team with 30 total points, with Colorado in second at 50 points, and Washington finished third with 85 points overall.
The WSU men's squad went on to finish sixth overall Friday afternoon at the Pac-12 Championships, totaling 171 points.
Leading the WSU men on the day was Zach Stallings who turned in a top-20 performance, finishing 18th overall with a time of 23:30.3. Following Stallings was fellow Coug Matthew Watkins who would go on to finish 27th overall, posting a time of 23:39.9 as well.
Jacob Nicholson would cross the finish line next for Washington State, posting a time of 24:46.3 overall for a 46th place finish, and just behind Jacob we saw Zak Kindl finish in 47th overall at 24:47.3. Cooper Cortinas would go on to place 52nd overall at 25:05.1, and Kennan Schrag close behind finishing 54th overall with a time of 25:17.4. Rounding out the remainder of the Cougars included Jacob Easton placing 57th (25:30.3), Sam Griffith in 62nd (25:51.5), Ethan Martin in 65th (26:01.1), and finally Pascal Kleyer finishing 67th overall (26:21.7).
"The men also ran a very tough race," Coach Phipps continued. "Despite not running a few key people, this group dug-down and rallied to miss fifth place by only seven points. Zach Stallings continued his amazing winter of racing, moving up 11 places in the last loop to finish 18th. He will also be given strong consideration for an NCAA individual berth."
Stanford finished first overall as a team with 28 points, followed by Colorado with 60 points, and finally in third was Washington with 66 total points.
INTO THE TWITTER-VERSE
Cougs all set to run at Pac-12 XC Championships!
— Washington State XC/TF (@WSUCougarXCTF) March 4, 2021
MARK YOUR CALENDAR
The Cougars will now wait until the NCAA Cross Country Selection Show and see if the Cougar women or men qualify as a team or any WSU individuals might have qualified as well. The selection show is set for March 7, and more information can be found at ncaa.com.