Nov 16, 2013

NCAA WEST REGIONALS: Bruin Men 9th, Pia 17th, Women 16th in NCAA Regional Races

A Winning Tradition

 
  • Eight NAIA Men's National Meets (5 Top 10 finishes)
  • Five NAIA District Men's Championships (1977, 1989, 1990, 1991, 1992)
  • One NCCAA Women's National Championship (1988)
  • Nine NAIA Women's National Meets (6 Top 10 finishes)
  • Six NAIA Women's District Championships (1988, 1989, 1990, 1991, 1992, 1993)
  • One Cascade Conference Women's Championship (1994)
  • Two NAIA Region Coaches of the Year
  • 10 Conference / District Coaches of the Year
  • 23 All-Americans (6 men, 17 women)
  • 53 Academic All-Americans (18 men, 35 women)
 

CLAREMONT, Calif. – Paced by All-Region performer Joseph Pia, the George Fox University men’s cross country team finished ninth out of 18 teams while the Bruin women came in 16th out of 20 teams in the NCAA Division III West Regional Championships Saturday here at the Pomona-Pitzer Colleges’ on-campus course.

 

Men

 

George Fox garnered 252 points in the men’s 8K race, trailing Whitman College with 235 points but ahead of Whitier College with 267.  Host Pomona-Pitzer edged the Claremont-Mudd-Scripps Colleges 71 to 78 to win the regional and an automtic bid to the NCAA D-III National Championships on Nov. 23 at Hanover College in Hanover, Ind.

 

Pia cruised to an all-time personal best mark of 25:55.13, finishing 17th overall and for team scoring for the Bruins.  He became the Bruins’ first All-Region runner since Cam Eberhart finished 25th in the 2009 West Regional (the top 35 finishers earn all-region honors).  Koby Tarbell narrowly missed All-Region status with his time of 26:33.12 which placed him 38th overall and 36th for team scoring.

 

Also counting for the Bruins were Kyle Dreibelbis with a 26:44.42 (47th/45th), Bryant Quinn with a 27:00.97 (58th/56th), and Cody Thompson with a 28:04.21 (101st/98th).  The Bruin contingent was completed by Aaron Molstad with a 28:08.62 (105th/102nd) and Micah Tate with a 29:02.29 (115th/112th).

 

The individual title was captured by John Guzman of Occcidental College, who beat runner-up Parker Bennett of Willamette University 24:40.27 to 24:52.14. 

 

“We really saved our best men’s race for last,” obseved George Fox head coach Randy Dalzell.  “Joseph had his best race ever to win All-Region honors, and depending on how many teams from our region get at-large bids, he has a chance of making it to the nationals as an at-large individual from teams which aren’t in the nationals.  Kody ran well to finish second, and Kyle ran one of his best races ever to finish third.  Cody Thompson has usually been among our top two or three all year, but his back was bothering him and he just didn’t feel well; had he been up to par, we might have finished a place or two higher.  Still, it’s a great way to end the season.

 

“We have been aiming at improvement in the Northwest Conference, so I think it is worth noting that we were fourth among conference schools, and might have even finished second had Cody been feeling better.  Joseph’s time was third among all the NWC athletes competing as well.”

 

Women

 

In the women’s 6K race, George Fox compiled 446 points, trailing Whittier with 422 while edging out Chapman University with 450.  Claremont-Mudd-Scripps took top honors and an NCAA automatic berth with 62 points, while Willamette placed second with 81 points.

 

Erin Sanders continued her outstanding rookie season for the Bruins by finishing 54th overall and for team scoring with a time of 23:56.08.  She was joined in the scoring column for the Bruins by Sarah MacKenzie with a 24:42.20 (84th/84th), Rachel Gibbs with a 24:58.89 (90th/90th), Taylor Suwa with a 25:31.59 (104th/104th), and Kelly Toms with a 26:19.87 (118th/114th).  George Fox only had five entrants in the women’s race.

 

Individual honors went to Michaela Freeby of Willamette, who ran a 21:37.66 to surpass the 21:48.10 by Melissa Skiba of California Lutheran University.

 

“While we would have liked to have finished higher, I think this race indicated that the main thing we need to do is improve our depth on the women’s side,” noted Dalzell.  “Right now we’ve got some good runners at the top of the order, but one of our better athletes, Katie Dyck, was unable to compete, and with only five runners entered, that stretched us a bit at the back.”

 

Complete results of the NCAA Division III West Regionals, courtesy of the Pomona-Pitzer sports information office, are available on the George Fox cross country website.  The men may be found at http://athletics.georgefox.edu/sports/xc/2013-14/files/1116m.pdf, and the women may be found at http://athletics.georgefox.edu/sports/xc/2013-14/files/1116w.pdf.