No. 7 Cross Country Headed to NCAA Championships
INDIANAPOLIS – The seventh-ranked Utah cross country team is officially headed to the NCAA Cross Country Championships after hearing its named announced on the Selection Saturday live stream.
The 2021 NCAA Cross Country Championships will be held at Apalachee Regional Park in Tallahassee, Fla., next Saturday, Nov. 20, at 8:20 a.m. (MT) and broadcast on ESPNU.
The Utes have now qualified for the NCAA Championships for the fourth time since 2015 under the direction of 17th-year head coach Kyle Kepler (2015, 2016, 2019). Utah's best finish at the championships came in 2019 when it came in 16th at the LaVern Gibson Championship XC Course.
Utah recently finished fifth against a loaded field at the NCAA Mountain Regionals this past Friday, collecting its fifth top-5 finish in the last six years - not including the 2020 season, which did not see a regional meet run due to COVID-19. Bella Williams (20:42.1) and Cara Woolnough (20:52.6) each garnered All-Region honors after finishing in 15th and 23rd, respectively, to lead the Utes.
Grayson Murphy, who finished eighth overall with a time of 19:36.27 as an individual qualifier in 2017, still holds the fastest time and finish by a Ute at the NCAA Championships. When comparing times and finish by an individual on teams that qualified for the championships, Murphy's mark of 20:33.3 (53rd overall) in 2016 is still the top time and finish for a Ute.
For the latest news and information on the Utah cross country and track & field programs, fans can stay connected online at www.UtahUtes.com and on social media by following on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.