By Jeremiah Griffin |
The Augusta University men’s cross-country team just missed winning the Southeast Regional meet on Nov. 9 in Wingate, N.C., finishing only four points behind first-place Queens and earning an automatic spot in the NCAA Division II nationals for the third straight year.
AU’s Jacob Poston finished second, posting a time of 31:05.5 for the 10-kilometer race. Teammate Chase Kennedy finished fourth with a run of 31:31.3. Chandler Kennedy came in eighth place at 31:31.3. Hunter Kimball was 14th in 31:57.6, and Jacob Burgamy took 25th in 32:18.7.
Joshua Chepkesir of UNC Pembroke was the men’s champion in 30:30.7, averaging 4:54 per mile. Mount Olive took third and Flagler fourth in the team title chase.
The AU men will run in the NCAA Division II national championship in Sacramento, Calif., on Nov. 23. The Jaguars finished 23rd in 2017 and 28th last year.
On the women’s side, Augusta junior Micah Weathers took third place in the 6K race. Weathers ran a time of 21:42.9. Lea Hanle from Mount Olive was first in 20:53.0, followed by Nicole McMillen of Tusculum in second in 21:02.1.
Queens took home the women’s team title, followed by Flagler, Wingate, Anderson, North Georgia and then Augusta.
The NCAA announced that Weathers will compete in the nationals as an individual qualifier.
AU’s coach Adam Ward was pleased with both teams’ performances in the regional.
“The senior women stepped up; the women ran really well,” Ward said. “The potential is there for Micah [Weathers] to be an All-American. We’ll just have to wait and see there.”
Ward also conveyed how stiff the competition was for the men for this meet.
“The guys ran extremely tough,” Ward said. “We knew it was going to be really tight. It was going to be us and one of those two teams, Queens or Mount Olive.”
Even though the men took second and automatically secured a spot for nationals, Ward disclosed that the Jaguars walked away a bit disappointed.
“It’s amazing what you get disappointed with,” he said. “We’ve become a victim of our own success when we’re disappointed with second place. It shows the progress, the depth and the effort that we’ve put in, especially the athletes.”
Contact Jeremiah Griffin at JEGRIFFIN@augusta.edu.