The South Plains College men's and women's cross country teams each earned a top 10 national finish on Saturday at the 2018 NJCAA Cross Country National Championships in Garden City, Kansas.
The Lady Texans placed fifth overall with 207 points and an average time of 20:28. Iowa Central won the women's division, followed by El Paso Community College, Southern Idaho and Cowley County. South Plains had three runners place inside the top 40 amongst 293 competitors including freshman Gladys Jemaiyo who turned in a second-place national finish in the women's 5k with a time of 18:43.8. Freshman Dorcus Ewoi ran a 19:45.3, good enough for 16th overall, while Angela Rodriguez placed 38th with a time of 20:38.6.
"We couldn't have asked for anything better from our women's team," South Plains head coach Erik Vance said. "We came in ranked 13th in the country, and to go out and finish top five nationally, that speaks to the work they've put in and the character this team has. Gladys finished second and Angela Rodriguez from Plains, Texas finished in the top 40 and is an All-American, they did an incredible job."
The Texans turned in a ninth-place national finish with 239 points and an average time of 27:30. South Plains placed three runners in the top 40 including Filmon Beyene who placed sixth overall with a final time of 26:02.2. Sophomore Andrew Bosquez crossed the line at 26:29.5, good enough for 13th, while Jesse Madrid placed 38th overall with a time of 27:27.7.
"Filmon went from a walk on for us last August to finishing sixth in the country, and that's just a testament to how hard he works," Vance said. "He wants to be great, and I was really excited for him knowing all the work he has put in paid off. We didn't get the finish that we wanted, and we need to learn from it and use it. We will get back out there next weekend at the Half Marathon and see what we can do."
Full Results: https://results.wayzatatiming.com/meets/1751