Cowboys Place 12th at NCAA Cross Country National Championships

Cowboys Place 12th at NCAA Cross Country National Championships

UW's Paul Roberts earned All-American honors with his 20th place finish at the NCAA Cross Country National Championships. UW Photo by Ricky Bassman.

MADISON, Wis.– On the snow-covered Thomas Zimmer Championship Course, Paul Roberts led the way for the Cowboys with an All-American performance, as he finished 20th in the men’s 10-kilometer race with a time of 29:41.36.

Cowboys Record Third-Best Finish in UW History

The Cowboys finished 12th as a team with 371 points, the team’s best finish since the Pokes placed third in 1977 and the third-best finish in program history.

“It was a lot of fun out there today,” said men’s cross country coach Scott Dahlberg. “The guys competed extremely well, they never quit and kept fighting for each other.

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“They put themselves in good positions early on in the race and were able to move up real well and maintain to the finish. Every single one of these guys ran with a grit and toughness that we’re all really proud of.

“The goal coming in was looking to get in the top 15, and we knew there were a lot of teams trying to do the same thing. We were able to move up a little past that in the last half of the race. We’re very excited, and we’re going to enjoy this time.”

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Roberts is UW’s Ninth Cross Country All-American

Roberts’ time is the fastest by a Cowboy at the NCAA National Championships since Geir Kvernmo finished 11th with a time of 29:35 in 1979. He is Wyoming’s ninth cross country All-American and the first since Mark Korir placed 19th in 2007.

“We’re very happy for Paul to be an All-American,” Dahlberg said. “We knew that was something he was very capable of, and he put himself in the race with those guys and didn’t let them go. We’re really excited for him.”

Henry Take a Top-100 Finish

Junior Christopher Henry finished 63rd overall with a time of 30:30.11, capping a stellar junior campaign with a top-100 finish at the national championships and receiving the NCAA Elite 90 Award.

Junior Harry Ewing finished in 30:39.50 to place 105th, while fellow junior Daniel Hintz placed 116th with a time of 30:47.51. Rounding out Wyoming’s scorers, senior Michael Downey finished 157th in 31:06.93.

Sophomore Jerald Taylor finished the race in 31:52.19 to place 211th, while senior Jonah Henry placed 243rd with a time of 32:55.66 to cap his cross country career for the Cowboys.

“These guys are a great crew,” Dahlberg said. “I’m super proud of how hard they ran all season to get here and how they showed up today on this stage to compete with the best.”

Cowboys Were Ranked No. 15 Heading into the Championships

Wyoming lowered its team score at every split, moving from 16th at two kilometers up to 12th at the end of the race.

The Cowboys improved on their No. 15 ranking in the USTFCCCA poll released earlier this week, and the runners had a top-15 finish on their minds heading into Madison. Wyoming placed third among Mountain West schools after finishing fourth at the MW Championships three weeks ago.

Overall, Northern Arizona defended their title by finishing first with 83 points, while BYU placed second with 116 points. Individually, Wisconsin’s Morgan McDonald won the race in front of his home crowd with a time of 29:08.30