Saints finish 2022 campaign at NAIA National Cross-Country Championships
The men’s cross-country team took 27th place out of 34 teams in the 67th Annual NAIA Men’s Cross-Country National Championship at Apalachee Regional Park on Friday. The Saints recorded the best team finish in school history.
The Saints finished with a team score of 728 points in the 8k with a total time of 2:11.22 and an average of 26:16.
Head Coach Patrick Torres said, “There’s not a lot you can be upset about when you finish the best in school history. I think this squad will have a chance to be special in the years to come.”
OLLU’s Jose Zarate was the Saints’ top finisher with a 64th place finish of 318 runners. Zarate’s 25:11.6 time set the Saints highest individual finish ever at nationals. Next was Hendrick Ramirez, 200th place, with a time of 26:22.9. He was followed by Diego Moran with a time of 26:25.6, Jayden Turrubiates with a time of 26:35.5, JoseCarlos Hernandez with a time of 26:47.4, Jose Saucedo with a time of 26:48.9 and Kruz Malesich with a time of 27:18.7.
The women’s cross-country meet followed, and the team finished in 35th place out of 36 teams. OLLU completed the race with a team score of 1,018 points in the 5k. They had a total time of 1:43.07 and an average of 20:37.
Deandra Ibarra crossed the finish line first for the Saints in 176th place at 19:31. Viridiana Zuniga followed in 289th place with a time of 20:47.6. She was followed by Sierra Ramirez with a time of 20:48.8, Nadia Sifuentes with a time of 20:54.3, Robbie Sue Espericueta with a time of 21:06, Mia Curiel with a time of 21:10.8 and Kennedy Villalpando with a time of 21:19.5.
Torres addressed the women’s results saying, “We learned a lot about ourselves today and most of this group will be back to improve upon what we did this year.”