TERRE HAUTE, Indiana – Texas A&M had two individuals place among the top 50 in their respective races at the NCAA Cross Country Championships on Monday morning on the LaVern Gibson Championship Course.
With field sizes that numbered over 250 runners, Shadrack Songok placed 22nd in the men’s race and earned his third cross country All-America honor. Songok covered the 10,000-meter course in 29 minutes, 39 seconds on an overcast day with the temperatures in the low 40s.
Songok paced an Aggie squad that finished 30th overall with 609 points. Oregon claimed the team title with 93 points behind individual winner Galen Rupp (28:44). The top five schools in the men’s team competition included Iona (147), Stanford (227), Wisconsin (229), and Auburn (264).
With the Aggie men qualifying a team to the national meet for the first time in five years a majority of this crop of A&M runners gained its initial experience in facing the challenge of the course and field of athletes on this level. Arkansas, who finished second to Texas A&M at the region meet, placed 28th with 579 points.
Christina Munoz capped a stellar cross country season by placing 46th in the women’s field with a time of 20:46. Munoz was just six places away from earning All-America status as the top 40 individuals receive the honor.
Aggie teammate Elizabeth Slaughter placed 214th in 22:08 as she finished one position ahead of Houston’s Stephanie Aldea (22:09), who Slaughter had tied with at the regional meet.
Among South Central Region runners in the national race, Munoz was second to Baylor’s Erin Bedell, who placed 37th in 20:40. Finishing behind Munoz from the region were Silje Fjortoft (50th) and Rachael Forish (64th) from SMU as well as Denise Bargiachi (54th) and Catherine White (65th) of Arkansas and Rice’s Nicole Mericle (73rd).
Washington captured the women’s team title with 79 points with Oregon (131), Florida State (163), West Virginia (198) and Princeton (220) rounding out the top five. Texas Tech’s Sally Kipyego won her third individual NCAA cross country title with a winning time of 19:29 to better Florida State’s Susan Kuijken (19:35) by six seconds.
Mitch Bible became the second Aggie to finish the men’s race. He covered the course in 31:04 to place 161st, which became 128th in the adjusted team score. Kevin McNab clocked a time of 31:15 to finish 186th (150th). Kevin Ondrasek and Joe Sauvageau crossed the finish line together with Ondrasek running 31:21 (191st / 155th) in front of Sauvageau’s 31:22 (192nd / 156th). Also running in the championship meet for Texas A&M were Kevin Burnett, who ran 32:20 and Logan Sherman, who posted a 33:29.
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