Nov. 13, 2006
TEMPE, Ariz. - The NCAA announced the qualifiers for the NCAA Cross Country Championships that will be held Monday, November 20, in Terre Haute, Ind., with the Arizona State University women's team earning one of the 13 at-large team selections into the meet. Aaron Aguayo was one of 38 individual men awarded at-large selections into the meet as well.
The women, who placed second in the Pac-10 Championships before finishing third in the NCAA West Region Championships Saturday in Portland, Ore., will enter the meet ranked 11th in the final USTFCCCA national Top 30 poll. Despite a young squad composed of three freshmen, one sophomore, two juniors and one senior, the Sun Devils will look to capture their second trophy finish in a row on the national stage by once again placing in the Top 4 of the team standings.
Jenna Kingma, Cassie Rios, Brooke Bennett, Ali Kielty and Kari Hardt each finished in the Top 25 at the regional meet over the weekend to earn all-region accolades from the USTFCCCA while Krystal Duke and Corey Randall also competed to help the women to their ninth NCAA appearance in school history. The Sun Devil women's nine-year streak of qualifying for nationals is the sixth-best in the nation currently, tying them with North Carolina. BYU and Providence lead the way having made the field in 18-consecutive years while Colorado is third (15 years), Stanford fourth (14 years) and NC State fifth (12 years).
Aguayo, the top individual qualifier from the West, will compete in his second NCAA Cross Country Championship meet after earning All-America honors by finishing 22nd at the 2004 meet. A three-time All-American (twice on the track in the 3,000m steeplechase), Aguayo will look to earn his second national honor in cross country, making him only the second ASU male to accomplish the feat, joining Fasil Bizuneh (1999 and 2001) as the program's only two-time honorees. An All-American honor for Aguayo would also be just the sixth total for the men's program after Larry Lawson (1974) and Todd Lewis (1991) also earned the accolade during their careers in Tempe.
The championships will be held on the LaVern Gibson Championship Course located at the Wabash Valley Family Sports Center in Terre Haute, Ind., with the women running a 6,000m race at noon ET followed by Aguayo in the 10,000m race starting at 1:15 p.m. ET.