TU Men Take Third At Midwest Regional
Nov. 12, 2011
DeKALB, Ill. - The University of Tulsa men's cross country team earned a third-place finish at the NCAA Midwest Regional Saturday afternoon. The team ran at the NIU North 40 course, and the event was being hosted by Northern Illinois University.
The No. 27-ranked team in the nation fell one spot shy of earning an automatic bid into the NCAA Championship Nov. 21, but the team defeated No. 18 Minnesota and is very likely to earn an at-large bid into the 31-team field.
The full field will be officially announced Sunday, Nov. 13 at 6 p.m.
Senior Paula Whiting finished third overall and automatically qualified for the NCAA Championship, but the women's team placed eighth overall and saw its season come to a close.
The team will be looking to return to the NCAA Championship after a two-year absence. The team ran at nationals in 2007 and '08, and there will be an at-large process to determine the remaining field.
"I was really happy with how the team ran today. It was an overall effort," TU head coach Steve Gulley said. "We knew that we had to go out and beat Minnesota, and when the race started to break up, we were in a good position to accomplish that goal. We still don't have the front-running that we would like, but the team effort was really strong."
Senior Paulo Pinheiro paced the Golden Hurricane with a 16th-place finish in the 10K event. He ran a time of 31:39.53. Junior Geraint Davies finished second for TU, as he crossed the line in 23rd with a mark of 31:51.27.
Senior Carl Stones (31:55.15) and junior Andrew Heyes (31:56.71) were 25th and 26th, respectively. Senior Tom Marshall (32:04.08) rounded out the team score with his 30th-place finish. Redshirt freshman Dennis Hodapp was 31st in 32:04.85.
"There was a lot of pressure today. The whole season came down to this race," Gulley said. "We didn't have the points to get into the NCAA's, so we had to get in front of people who had the points, and we did that. After three months of utilizing a different philosophy, I feel like we are where we wanted to be at this point of the season."
MEN'S TEAM RESULTS 1. No. 2 Oklahoma State (42) 2. No. 5 Oklahoma (45) 3. No. 27 TULSA (120) 4. No. 18 Minnesota (129) 5. Illinois (157) 6. Iowa State (183) 7. Missouri (211) 8. Kansas (219) 9. Iowa (278) 10. Southern Illinois (302) 11. Loyola (Ill.) (305) 12. Drake (323) 13. UMKC (390) 14. Nebraska (401) 15. North Dakota State (406) 16. Eastern Illinois (438) 17. South Dakota State (440) 18. Wichita State (470) 19. SE Missouri (512) 20. Bradley (547) 21. Illinois-Chicago (552) 22. Kansas State (632) 23. DePaul (668) 24. Saint Louis (668) 25. Creighton (732)
Whiting was part of the first TU women's team to run at the NCAA Championship a year ago, and she will now join Becker (2006, 2007) and Fride Vullum (1998, 1999) as the only two women's runners in school history to make multiple appearances at the national championship. She finished 133rd last year.
Tulsa finished eighth as a team with 248 points. No. 10 Iowa State took home top honors with 64 points, and No. 23 Oklahoma State was second with 119 points. No. 20 Minnesota was third with 136 points, and Iowa was fourth with 146 points. Northwestern (204), Nebraska (215) and Missouri (238) also finished ahead of the Golden Hurricane.
Behind Whiting was junior Jaclyn Rollins, who was 40th in 22:11.86. Sophomore Josie Wilcox was 40th in 22:22.27, junior Ashley Scott was 50th in 22:25.04, and freshman Lauren Collette was 109th in 23:13.02.
"The girls ran well, but the five hole continues to be a weakness for us," Gulley said. "I'm not disappointed in them at all. I was happy with their performance, and I'm especially happy for Paula. She's running with a lot of confidence right now. I don't think she could've ran better today."
WOMEN'S TEAM RESULTS 1. No. 10 Iowa State (64) 2. No. 23 Oklahoma State (119) 3. No. 20 Minnesota (136) 4. Iowa (146) 5. Northwestern (204) 6. Nebraska (215) 7. Missouri (238) 8. TULSA (248) 9. Kansas (255) 10. Oklahoma (297) 11. Illinois State (312) 12. Wichita State (315) 13. North Dakota State (355) 14. Kansas State (461) 15. Illinois (473) 16. South Dakota State (475) 17. Bradley (480) 18. Eastern Illinois (483) 19. UMKC (489) 20. Oral Roberts (509) 21. Northern Iowa (522) 22. Saint Louis (530) 23. Southern Illinois (552) 24. Loyola (Ill.) (581) 25. Missouri State (619) 26. SE Missouri (721) 27. DePaul (737) 28. Northern Illinois (786)
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