WOMEN'S CROSS COUNTRY RUNS TO HISTORIC 12TH PLACE FINISH AT NCAA SOUTH REGIONAL
November 11, 2016
Men's Results Women's Results
TALLAHASEE, Fla. – The University of Tennessee at Martin women’s cross country team put a positive stamp on the 2016 season by posting a history 12th place finish at the NCAA Division I South Regional Championship held at Apalachee Regional Park in Tallahassee, Fla. on Friday morning. Senior Ann Asipan paced the Skyhawk field once again, earning All-Region honors with a 19th place finish.
UT Martin went into the NCAA South Regional Championship unranked after previously holding rankings as high as No. 13 and No. 15, respectively. With 47 Division I programs in the South Region, the championship boasted the top 30 programs in the region going head-to-head. The Skyhawks proved their worth of a ranking with a historic 12th place finish – the highest mark for a team in school history. The team outmatched all Ohio Valley Conference foes in the field, defeating both Belmont and Tennessee Tech.
Asipan, a native of Iten, Kenya, put her final stamp on a decorated career with a 19th place finish out of 212 individual competitors at the South Regional Championships with a time of 20:48.1. Her top-25 finish earned the senior All-Region honors for the second consecutive year. Asipan leaves the cross country program as a two-time defending OVC individual champion while pacing the Skyhawks in every meet of her career.
Included in the Skyhawks historic morning was the performance of the supporting cast. Freshman Emma Edmonds posted a new 6k personal-record with a 77th place time of 21:59.1. She was followed up by junior Amelia Martin who continued her strong campaign with yet another PR – setting PRs in both the 5k and 6k events this season. Martin crossed the line at 22:16.0 while Kara Martin’s time of 22:18.2 earned both competitors top-100 finishes. Sophomore Nelly Kandie rounded out the scoring-five with a time of 22:31.8 for a new PR.
On the men’s side, freshman Ryan Ford made his NCAA South Region Championship debut with his first 10k of his young career. Ford finished 79th overall with a time of 32:40.4 for a PR. While Ford ranked as the only men’s individual in the field for the Skyhawks, UT Martin head coach Peter Dalton says fans can look forward to a full complement of athletes to compete for a regional crown in the future.
“The 12th place finish at the NCAA Region Championship is just the beginning,” said Dalton. “Two years ago, just before I was hired, the team was ranked 11th out of 12 schools in the conference. In such a short amount of time, these ladies have embraced many challenges, ran with Skyhawk pride and put UT Martin cross country on the map.”