Batty takes 15th, Cougars finish 18th at NCAA Championships
TERRE HAUTE -- Wrapping up the 2010 season, the No. 15 BYU men’s cross country team put on a strong showing despite winds of 20 miles per hour with an 18th place finish at the NCAA National Championships in Terre Haute, Ind. on Monday.
“Our expectations are always high and we were optimistic,” BYU men's head coach Ed Eyestone said. “Finishing 18th out of 300 or so Division I programs isn’t too bad.”
The Cougars finish the 2010 season with another solid national performance, their 11th consecutive top 25 finish. With 414 points, BYU fell to Oklahoma State who took home its second consecutive title with 73 points.
Junior Miles Batty paced the Cougars, leading the pack with a 10K time of 30:09.4, good enough for 15th place overall. The Sandy native led BYU in each race this season, capping his junior campaign with All-America honors for finishing in the top 40 of 246 total athletes in the race.
"Top 15 was one of my individual goals but as a team I wish we could have done a little better," Batty said. "It is kind of bittersweet for me."
Batty’s finish was the highest since Kyle Perry finished 10th in 2008. Next season as a senior, Batty will have one more chance to bring a title home to BYU. Josh Rohatinsky last won an individual championship in 2006. Junior Alden Bahr finished second for the Cougars and 48th overall in a time of 30:36.6.
“Miles (Batty) and Alden (Bahr) brought their A-game today,” Eyestone said. “As a team we are really happy for them.”
Senior Nate Ogden finished his collegiate career with an 106th place finish in a time of 31:14.5. Freshman Jared Ward finished 151st in 31:35.5, junior Travis Fuller in 183rd with a time of 32:00, sophomore Rex Shields took 194th in 32:03.5 and another senior, Jon Kotter finished his last race in 211th with a time of 32:27.7.
Junior Kate Bowen represented the BYU women’s cross country team at championships, coming away with a 61st place finish in 21:04.1.
“Kate (Bowen) ran a really great race today,” BYU women's head coach Patrick Shane said. “The pack stayed tight for most of the race and she stuck right in there. She represented our team and the university well.”
Bowen was the top runner for the Cougars for the entire 2010 season and will return next season in hopes of improving on her performance at the National Championships.
“I did not start as well as I should have today,” Bowen said. “I have not been able to have a strong finish this season either, so that is a little bit frustrating. I did run a pretty even race today and maintained my position well until the final push.”
This marks the end of the 2010 NCAA cross country season. Several BYU cross country runners will compete on the Cougar track and field team starting in January.
Cougars Look For Top Finish At Nationals
PROVO -- In a search to add to its list of accomplishments for the 2010 season, the No. 15 BYU men’s cross country team is heading to the NCAA Championships in Terre Haute, Indiana on Monday.
“We feel pretty good being ranked No. 15, but the guys know we are better than that,” men’s head coach Ed Eyestone said. “The team has a bit of a chip on its shoulder.”
The men’s team is participating in its 12th consecutive NCAA Championship race. Eyestone, a former collegiate cross country champion and 10-time All-American will look to lead the Cougars to another strong performance despite the team not being the favorite to compete for the top spots.
“When expectations are not as high we can go in loose and try to knock it out of the park,” Eyestone said. “We need everyone to reach down and pull out a season best performance.”
Junior Miles Batty has been a valuable leader and a top performer for BYU all year. He has the fastest 8K time in the Mountain West Conference with 23:52.5. After winning the MWC Championship in October, last week at the Mountain Regional, Batty finished second overall with a 10K time of 29:30.1.
Along with Batty, three other Cougars earned All-Region honors, including sophomore Travis Fuller, freshman Jared Ward and senior Nathan Ogden. Each member of the team will look to finish in the top 40 to earn All-American honors for the race.
“There has been a different guy each week stepping up for us,” Eyestone said. “It shows how equally strong our guys are.”
BYU finished 2nd in 1993, its highest finish ever, and has finished in the top 10 five times. In 2009, the Cougars finished 17th.
Junior Kate Bowen will be the representative for the BYU women’s team at the national meet after finishing in the top 15 in the Mountain Region. Bowen will compete against 237 other runners in hopes of finishing in the top-40 and earning All-America honors.
“Kate (Bowen’s) workouts have been going really well this week,” BYU women’s head coach Patrick Shane said. “We feel like she can finish in the top-40 if she can run her best race, and any finish in the top-60 places is remarkable with this many competitors.”
Bowen has been the lead runner for the women for the entire 2010 season. She finished 12th overall in the Mountain Region and fifth at the MWC Championships.
This will be the second NCAA Championships race for Bowen after she finished 80th as a freshman in 2006.
Indiana State University will host the Championships in Terre Haute, IN on Monday, Nov. 22. Race time for the women is set to begin at 10:08 a.m., with the men beginning at 10:48 a.m. MT. A live webcast will be broadcast on NCAA.com, with results posted following the completion of the meet.