Simuchimba Advances to NCAA Cross Country Meet

by LSUsports.net (@LSUsports)
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Simuchimba Advances to NCAA Cross Country Meet

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — LSU’s Joseph Simuchimba punched his ticket to the cross country national championships Saturday at the NCAA South Central Regional in Fayettevillle, Ark., finishing eighth overall to earn all-region honors and an automatic bid as an individual.

Simuchimba becomes just the fifth athlete in Tiger history, and the first since the 2001 season, to advance to the NCAA meet. He did so behind a season-best outing that saw him finish the 10K Agri Park course in an impressive 29:52.1.

“That was a tremendous run for Joseph,” said LSU cross country coach Mark Elliott. “He ran nearly 40 seconds faster than he did on this course at the Chile Pepper Festival just under a month ago. That is a huge improvement and a great effort. Now we have got to get him ready for the national meet.”

The NCAA Championships are scheduled for Nov. 19 in Terre Haute, Ind.

Simuchimba was not the only Tiger to excel on Saturday as sophomore Jacob Simmons also earned all-region honors by virtue of his top 25 finish. A native of Houma, La., Simmons clocked a season best 31:02.1 to place 23rd overall and record his fifth top-25 showing in six meets this season.

In all, the Tigers accumulated 188 team points to place fifth overall as each of the five scoring runners turned in season-best efforts.

“The men ran extremely well today,” said Elliott. “They entered the meet ranked sixth in the region and came out ahead of that. I feel like we finished off the year on a good note.”

Arkansas and Texas finished 1-2 in the team standings to earn the automatic bids to the NCAA Championships.

The women’s top-two automatic bids went to Rice and Arkansas. LSU finished 11th overall with 300 points.

“The women were ranked 13th coming into this meet so to finish 11th I think is a good showing,” said Elliott. “I felt all seven athletes ran well. Obviously, you always hope to finish higher, but I think we ended the season on a good note.”

Senior Kate Accardo once again paced the Lady Tiger squad individually. She placed 45th overall after completing the 6K course in a season-best 22:29.7. LSU’s other four scorers all finished within spots of each other as Megan Broussard crossed the line in 73rd (23:25.5), Christina Porter was 76th (23:28.7) and Katie Dawson (23:37.3) and Jennifer Radecker (23:37.7) were 78th and 79th, respectively.

NCAA SOUTH CENTRAL REGIONAL RESULTS

Team Results

Men
1. Arkansas, 37
2. Texas, 52
3. Texas A&M, 101
4. Lamar, 122
5. LSU, 188
6. Baylor, 193
7. Texas A&M-CC, 200
8. Rice, 201
9. Arkansas-Little Rock, 239
10. North Texas, 262
11. Texas-Arlington, 269
12. Texas-Pan American, 270
13. McNeese State, 287
14. Arkansas State, 417

Women
1. Rice, 54
2. Arkansas, 70
3. Baylor, 75
4. Texas A&M, 140
5. Texas, 148
6. Lamar, 166
7. SMU, 169
8. Arkansas-Little Rock, 236
9. Tulane, 239
10. Stephen F. Austin, 257
11. LSU, 300
12. Texas State, 338
13. Texas-Pan American, 363
14. Arkansas-Pine Bluff, 389
15. Arkansas State, 416

Individual Results (Winner plus all LSU competitors)

Men
1, Shadrack Songok, Texas A&M-CC, 29:16.3. 8, Joseph Simuchimba, 29:52.1. 23, Jacob Simmons, 31:02.1. 43, Elkana Kosgei, 31:46.9. 54, Michael Hendry, 32:06.9. 81, Michael Florek, 33:24.6. 85, Richard Chautin, 33:38.7.

Women
1, Silje Fjortoft, SMU, 20:34.2. 45, Kate Accardo, 22:29.7. 73, Megan Broussard, 23:25.5. 76, Christina Porter, 23:28.7. 78, Katie Dawson, 23:37.3. 79, Jennifer Radecker, 23:37.1. 91, Lindsay Day, 24:16.3. 92, Christy Zirkle, 24:17.2.

The following teams and individuals were selected to the NCAA Championships (on Nov. 11, 2007):

Men’s Automatic Qualifying Teams
Alabama- South Region
Arkansas- South Central Region
Colorado- Mountain Region
Florida State- South Region
Georgetown- Mid-Atlantic Region
Iona- Northeast Region
Louisville- Southeast Region
Michigan- Great Lakes Region
Minnesota- Midwest Region
North Carolina State- Southeast Region
Oklahoma State- Midwest Region
Oregon- West Region
Portland- West Region
Providence- Northeast Region
Texas- South Central Region
UTEP- Mountain Region
Villanova- Mid Region
Wisconsin- Great Lakes Region

Men’s At-large Teams
Arizona State
Brigham Young
California
Cal Poly
Indiana
Iowa State
Northern Arizona
Notre Dame
Ohio State
Stanford
Tulsa
Virginia
William and Mary

Men’s Individual Automatic Qualifiers

Great Lakes Region
Andy Baker Butler
Josh Karanja Eastern Michigan
Pat Sovacool Miami (Ohio)
Craig Leon Ohio

Middle Atlantic Region
Dave Nightingale Princeton
Brendan Fennell American
Tom Slosky Duquesne
Steve Hallinan American
Michael Maag Princeton
Ben Sitler Princeton

Midwest Region
Trent Hoerr Illinois
Colby Wissel Kansas
Dan Hedgecock Missouri
Mohamed Mohamed Southern Illinois

Mountain Region
Jeremy Johnson New Mexico
Mark Korir Wyoming
Seth Pilkington Weber State
Matt Williams Air Force

Northeast Region
Patrick Mellea Boston College
John Mickowski Army
Sage Canaday Cornell
Jeff Scull Syracuse

South Central Region
Shadrack Songok Texas A&M-Corpus Christi
Francis Kasagule Lamar
Joseph Simichimba LSU
Festus Kigen TCU

Southeast Region
Josh McDougal Liberty
Jacob Korir Eastern Kentucky
Joseph Maina Eastern Kentucky
Matt Clark Clemson

South Region
Felix Kibioywo Auburn
Jeremy Criscione Florida
Micah Tirop South Alabama
David Herren Georgia Tech

West Region
Austin Ramos UCLA
Kyle Shackleton UCLA
Ulices Pina UC Riverside
Drew Shackleton UCLA