UK Cross Country Women’s Team Third at NCAA SE Regional

Results: Women | Men

EARLYSVILLE, Va. – One point, the measure of three tenths of a second, separated the Kentucky women’s cross country team from an automatic National Championships bid on Friday.

The Wildcats battled remarkably, moving up three spots in the final 1,000 meters to place third as a team with 164 points compared with Louisville’s 163, on Friday at the University of Virginia’s Panorama Farms course.

The Wildcats are left to hope for an at-large bid to the NCAA Championships, which will be announced on Saturday.

Katy Kunc, the Southeastern Conference Bronze Medalist two weeks ago, finished third overall in a 6k time of 20:26.60 to earn an individual automatic bid to next Saturday’s NCAA Championships. Kunc herself passed three runners in the last kilometer.

She became the first Kentucky women’s team member to earn a NCAA individual bid since Cally Macumber in 2013.

North Carolina State comfortably claimed the first of two automatic NCAA Championship bids available on Friday, winning with 53 points with four of the top-12 finishers.

Kentucky, Louisville and Furman were left to battle for the second automatic bid.

The Cardinals scored 163 points (7-25-38-41-52) to the Wildcats’ 164 (3-23-39-42-57). The Paladins finished 4th with 168 points and Wake Forest was 5th with 186.

Three tenths of a second – 1:45.45 compared with 1:46.48 – was the difference between Louisville and Kentucky.

Caroline McCaslin placed 23rd in a 6k PR 21:07.10 to earn All-Southeast Region honors alongside Kunc. Avery Bussjager placed 39th in 21:38.60. Bussjager broke 22 minutes for a full 6k for the first time, although she ran 21:22.30 over 5.914k at the Alabama Crimson Classic on Oct. 14.

Kentucky’s first three finishers built a five-point lead on Louisville 65-70. 

Louisville made up the 5-point margin on UK through their fourth and fifth-place finishers. 

Louisville No. 4 finisher Mia Ross (41st in 21:40.10) just edged Kentucky’s Amy Hansen (42nd in 21:40.40) to score one fewer point. Louisville’s No. 5 finisher Adair Gennocro was 53rd in 21:47.30, five spots ahead of UK’s Whitney O’Bryan who finished in 21:55.20.

Hansen and O’Bryan both fought hard down the stretch nonetheless. Hansen moved up eight spots in the last kilometer, and O’Bryan passed three runners in the latter stages of the race.

The Wildcats finished eight spots better than they did at the same meet a year ago.

Men’s race report
The men’s 10k was one of the closer team competitions of all the regionals across the country.

Kentucky finished 60 points behind winner NC State, and 45 behind host No. 16 Virginia. The Wildcats scored 150 points. The four teams ahead of UK all finished with 27 points of one another.

Jacob Thomson placed seventh overall, two spots off the last individual NCAA bid as of Friday, before at-large team bids are announced. Thomson was sixth among individuals not on NC State of UVA, the two automatic qualifier teams. 

He ran 29:14.60 to lead finish as the top Wildcat. Thomson’s time was a 10k cross country personal best.

If none or one Southeast Region teams make the NCAA Championships as at-large selections then EKU’s Eric Rotich will go to NCAAs as an individual selection, if two, then Thomson; if three or more, then Louisville’s Calvin Chemoiywo per Tyler Mayforth & Kyle Terwillegar of the United States Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches’ Association.

Kentucky’s men’s team could of course be one of the teams to make NCAAs as an at-large selection having won two meets this season, including the Alabama Crimson Classic, placed second at the Texas A&M Invitational and placed third at the SEC Championships.

Ben Young placed 26th with a time of 30:13.30 in his first collegiate 10k.

Mick Iacofano was 30th overall in 30:15.70, more than two minutes better than his previous cross country 10k personal best to finish as UK’s No. 3 placer.

Daniel Southard was UK’s No. 4 finisher, 43rd overall in 30:28.50, and Brennan Fields finished one spot behind him in 30:29.30.

Kentucky improved by four spots from the Southeast Region finish a year ago.

Meet format
The name of Friday’s game was qualifying for the NCAA Championships, to be run on Saturday, Nov. 19 in Terre Haute, Indiana.

The top-2 teams at each regional championship punched an automatic bid to NCAAs. 

In addition to the 18 automatic bids coming from the nine regional meets to be held around the nation on Friday, another 13 at-large bids will be extended Saturday based on 2016 competition résumés – based largely on head-to-head.

The top-four individual regional finishers not on advancing teams automatically qualify for the NCAA Championships. Individual at-large bids can also be extended. Those at-large bids will be announced with the full NCAA Championships field on Saturday.

The southeast region includes all Division I universities in Kentucky, Virginia, North Carolina and South Carolina.

Scoring
Each team’s first five finishers place counts toward team score. The next two runners may displace runners from opposing teams. First place is worth one point, second place two points, etc. Low score wins.

Precedent
Thomson led Kentucky to a ninth place (224 points) finish at the NCAA Southeast Regional last year. Thomson finished 10th individually, and earned Kentucky’s first men’s individual at-large bid to NCAAs since 2012.

Kunc led the way for the UK women’s team, which finished 11th with 304 points at 2015 regionals. 

UK has not qualified for the NCAA Championships as a team since the women’s squad did so in 2008. The Kentucky men’s team last made NCAAs in 2003 – placing 28th with 642 points.

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Women's Results

Pl

Team

Pts

1

2

3

4

5

[6]

[7]

1

NC State

53

2
E Kemp
20:19.0

10
R Frazier
20:42.8

11
R Koon
20:44.3

12
A Rudawsky
20:45.5

18
E Henes
20:59.8

43
K Kramer
21:40.7

72
B Taye
22:06.1

2

Louisville

163

7
D Wasike
20:36.0

25
B Davis
21:08.5

38
C Gosser
21:34.5

41
M Ross
21:40.1

52
A Gennocro
21:47.3

80
B Beery
22:12.5

114
A Wilson
22:40.2

3

Kentucky

164

3
K Kunc
20:26.6

23
C McCaslin
21:07.1

39
A Bussjager
21:38.6

42
A Hansen
21:40.4

57
W O'Bryan
21:55.2

69
J Weston
22:04.4

118
A Busse
22:42.0

4

Furman

168

15
S Carnahan
20:53.4

19
E Hurley
21:03.4

22
L Miller
21:06.2

33
G Jennings
21:31.5

79
J Stephenson
22:10.7

83
G Dwyer
22:15.6

168
R Burr
23:33.4


Men's Results

Pl

Team

Pts

1

2

3

4

5

[6]

[7]

1

NC State

90

4
G Parsons
28:59.7

10
A Myjer
29:23.1

17
S Hanson
29:48.3

20
P Sheehan
29:54.9

39
E Moskowitz
30:24.1

87
P Hall
31:32.7

2

Virginia

105

9
Z Herriott
29:17.0

12
L Cook
29:31.1

14
C Weaverling
29:39.4

32
M Novak
30:17.2

38
B Demarest
30:23.8

97
A Corbett
31:43.2

131
J Pace
32:25.0

3

Furman

106

6
F Lara
29:08.2

15
J Brickell
29:39.9

24
R Adams
30:08.7

28
M Coppi
30:13.6

33
J Ogden
30:17.4

60
M Lange
30:56.3

121
Q McKinnish
32:11.1

4

Eastern Kentucky

117

5
E Rotich
29:02.8

11
A Maritim
29:26.7

16
A Kosgey
29:46.7

36
J Perales
30:20.5

49
L Luna
30:37.9

55
J Abrahamsen
30:48.6

105
J Coleman
31:51.4

5

Kentucky

150

7
J Thomson
29:14.6

26
B Young
30:13.3

30
M Iacofano
30:15.7

43
D Southard
30:28.5

44
B Fields
30:29.3

47
G Harm
30:35.0

48
K Muhammad
30:36.1

6

Virginia Tech

181

19
B Musselman
29:53.8

23
A Gaiser
30:05.7

25
D Jaskowak
30:09.4

56
J Joyce
30:49.1

58
D Zarate
30:51.1

65
D Rau
31:03.9

114
V Ciattei
32:04.8


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