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Men's XC, Whiting Qualify For Nationals

The TU men's cross country team was selected as an at-large team in this year's NCAA Championships.
The TU men's cross country team was selected as an at-large team in this year's NCAA Championships.
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Nov. 13, 2011

INDIANAPOLIS - Following a dominant effort at the NCAA Midwest Regional Saturday, the NCAA Division I Men's and Women's Track and Field Committee announced today that eight members of The University of Tulsa cross country team will compete at nationals.

Heading to the final race of the season will be the seven members of the men's team, and senior Paula Whiting will represent the women's team in her final collegiate race.

The NCAA Division I Men's and Women's Cross Country Championships will be hosted by Indiana State and will take place at the LaVern Gibson Championship Course located at Wabash Valley Family Sports Center in Terre Haute, Ind.

The men's race will begin at approximately 11:08 a.m., followed by the women's race at 11:58 a.m. A live webcast of the championships will be broadcast from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Monday, Nov. 21 on NCAA.com. In addition, highlights from the championships will be included as part of the CBS NCAA Fall Seasonal Show scheduled to air on Saturday, Dec. 18 from noon to 1 p.m. on CBS HD.

The TU men tied the school record for best finish at regionals Saturday when the team finished third. For their efforts, they will be the first men's team since 2008 to compete at nationals. This will also be just the third team in school history to run at the NCAA Championship (2007, 2008).

The men scheduled to compete are seniors Tom Marshall, Paulo Pinheiro and Carl Stones, juniors Geraint Davies and Andrew Heyes, and redshirt freshmen Dennis Hodapp and Danny Thater.

Whiting was selected as an at-large individual on the women's side after finishing third at regionals Saturday. That finish tied her mark from last year, which also tied the school record for best finish by a women's runner at the regional event.



She ran at last year's installment of the national championship after helping make history by being part of the first women's team in school history to earn a bid into the field. She finished the race in 133rd position.

She will join former TU greats Alex Becker (2006, '07) and Fride Vullum (1998, '99) as the only three women's runners in school history to make multiple appearances at the national championship.

In order to be eligible to participate in the championships, teams and individuals qualified in their respective NCAA regional competitions.

Thirty-one teams were selected to participate in each championship. The top two, seven-person teams automatically qualified from each of the nine regions, for a total of 18 teams. Thirteen additional teams were selected at-large.

Thirty-eight individuals were selected to participate in each championship through an automatic qualifier and at-large selection process. All individual qualifiers finished in the top 25 in their region.