BENJAMIN MICHAELIS | DAILY EVERGREEN FILE
The WSU cross country team traveled to Salt Lake City for the Pac-12 Championship races. The men finished fifth and the women placed seventh overall.
Junior Amir Ado led the Cougs on the 8,000-meter course. He recorded a time of 24:30.6 and placed 18th overall. This would also be Ado’s second top 20 finish of the season. In his previous Pac-12 race, Ado finished 28th in 2018.
WSU finished fifth overall scoring 146 points against four ranked teams. This is the highest placing in a Pac-12 Championship since 2018 when the men’s team also placed fifth. No. 3 Colorado did end up winning the Pac-12 Championship with a score of 39. Stanford’s Charles Hicks won the individual title with a time of 23:34.9.
Senior Felix Wammetsberger finished 28th out of 80 runners. He recorded a time of 25:01.0. Senior Zach Stallings finished 32nd overall with a time of 25:08.6.
Rounding out the finishing of the Cougs, senior Matthew Watkins finished at 38th and had a time of 25:24.3. Sophomore Sam Griffith was the last to finish for the Cougs and finished with a time of 25:45.8 for 45th overall.
The women also had several big runs and broke season-best times. Sophomore Neema Kimtai finished in the top 20. She competed in the 6,000-meter course and finished with a 21:23.1 and finished 19th overall. This was her highest finish at the Pac-12 Championships. This is also her second top-20 finish of the season.
The women scored 179 points and finished seventh overall. There were also four ranked teams on the women’s side. The seventh-place finish is the highest finish in the last 10 years for the Cougs. Sophomore Caroline Jerotich finished 29th out of 107 runners with a time of 21:41.5. This was also her best finish at a Pac-12 Championship.
Sophomore Alaina Stone-Boggs came in 34th with a time of 21:48.2. This was the third top-35 performance for the sophomore this season.
Junior Zorana Grujic and senior Pia Richards finished back-to-back placing 59th and 60th. Grujic finished with a time of 22:50.3 and Richards finished with a time of 22:51.9.
According to head coach Wayne Phipps, it was a great step for both teams. Both the men and women had great improvements and great personal times.
The Cougs will be traveling to the NCAA West Regional meet on Nov. 12 in Sacramento, California to compete.