Nov. 11, 2011
LOGAN, Utah - Utah State's men and women's cross country teams will continue their season at the 2011 NCAA Mountain Region Championships, hosted by BYU, at the East Basy Golf Course in Provo, Utah on Saturday Nov. 12.
USU's men are ranked at No. 39 in the nation as well as ranking fourth in the Mountain Region. Muchapiwa Mazano is the only Aggie to have won first-place at the Mountain Region Championships as he won the title in 1993. Seniors Brian McKenna and Daniel Howell each placed in the top 20 last season with Howell in 18th-place and McKenna finishing 20th. McKenna also placed 19th in 2009.
"We are excited to compete and also to see if what we practiced on works out," said USU veteran head coach Gregg Gensel. "We want to improve each time we go out there to run."
The men's race will be a 10K and the women's race will be a 6K. The men's race will be very competitive, featuring the No. 3 ranked team in the country, BYU, and No. 4 Colorado. Northern Arizona, which is currently ranked 12th in the nation, will also be competing with the Aggies, as well as many other local schools, including Southern Utah, Utah Valley and Weber State. The women's race will feature two nationally ranked teams, including No. 3 Colorado and No. 19 New Mexico, who are the defending region champions.
The top two teams in each race will automatically advance to nationals, and the top four athletes in each race not on a team that advances also automatically advance. The results from the nine regions across the country will be compiled by the NCAA to determine the 13 at-large teams, which will be announced on Monday. The NCAA Cross Country National Championships will take place on Monday, Nov. 21 in Terre Haute, Ind. Those finishing in the top 25 on Saturday will receive all-Region honors.
In their last action, the Aggie men won their sixth Western Athletic Conference Cross Country Championship in the last seven years on Oct. 29 in Honolulu as Utah State's women finished third.
McKenna crossed the finish line in first-place capturing his second individual WAC cross country title along with being named Athlete of the Year, also for the second-time in his career. USU veteran head coach was named the men's Coach of the Year for the sixth time in the last seven years.
Fans can follow Utah State Athletics, including Aggie track & field and cross country, at http://twitter.com/USUAthletics or on Facebook at Utah State University Athletics.
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