Braxton Leads LSU, Finishes 11th in NCAA Regionals

by Jared Laque
Men's Results Women's Results +0
Braxton Leads LSU, Finishes 11th in NCAA Regionals

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – LSU’s cross country teams wrapped up the 2016 season at the NCAA South Central Regional on Friday morning with three runners finishing in the Top 60 at the Agri Park XC Course. Sophomore Dajour Braxton led the Tigers’ efforts with an 11th-place finish to earn all-region honors for his performance.

The Agri Park XC Course played host to the regional championship where the men raced the 10k course and the women raced the 6k course.

Braxton finished the men’s 10k with a time of 30 minutes, 48.5 seconds to finish just one at-large spot shy of NCAA Championship qualification with Tulane’s regional champion Emmanuel Rotich and Louisiana-Lafayette’s bronze medalist Stanley Limoh advancing as individuals.

Braxton’s 11th-place individual finish at the NCAA South Central Regional is the best by a Tiger since Joseph Simuchimba was eighth overall in the 2007 championship. Simuchimba remains the last men’s cross country runner to qualify for the NCAA Championships when he did so that season.

Arkansas swept the men’s and women’s regional titles as they took first place in the 10k and 6k events with 40 points and 48 points, respectively. Rotich was the first-place finisher for the men with a time of 29:58.9, while Arkansas’ Devin Clark won the women’s race in 20:17.4.

LSU raced seven runners, four in the 10k and three in the 6k. Due to the number of runners competing for the Tigers and Lady Tigers, neither was able to post a team score. 

Following Braxton on the men’s team were juniors Christian Johnson and DC Lipani who placed 64th and 82nd, respectively. Johnson crossed the finish with a time of 32:19.5, while Lipani recorded a time of 32:44.8. Freshman Harrison Martingayle rounded out the men’s teams’ efforts, finishing in 100th-place. Martingayle had a time of 33:22.2. 

The Lady Tigers’ first finisher was sophomore Hannah Bourque in 53rd and senior Ashley Welborn immediately after in 54th-place. Bourque crossed the finish at 22:18.0 with Welborn following a split-second behind in 22:19.5. Freshman Ruby Stauber also made her NCAA Regional Debut for the Lady Tigers on Friday. 

Overall, Head Coach Khadevis Robinson was pleased with his team’s effort.

“The meet went well,” Robinson said. “Dajour (Braxton) barely missed out on Nationals, but he will be All-Region. We had a couple of personal records and everyone ran relatively well.”

From finishing in the Top 25, Braxton earned All-Regional honors to close out a solid 2016 campaign. After his 11th-place finish, Braxton recorded his fourth Top 15 finish in six meets this season. 

This also marks the second-straight season in which an LSU cross country runner has placed among the Top 15 at the NCAA South Central Regional after Morgan Schuetz placed 12th individually for the Lady Tigers a year ago. 

For the latest information on LSU’s men’s and women’s cross country teams, fans can follow the Tigers and Lady Tigers on Twitter @LSUTrackField and on Facebook by liking LSU Track and Field.  

2016 NCAA South Central Regional Championships Results

Individual Results
1. Emmanuel Rotich, Tulane, 29:58.9
11. Dajour Braxton, 30:48.5
64. Christian Johnson, 32:19.5
82. DC Lipani, 32:44.8
100. Harrison Martingayle, 33:22.2

Individual Results
1. Arkansas’ Devin Clark, 20:17.4
53. Hannah Bourque, 22:18.0
54. Ashley Welborn, 22:19.5