Coastal Carolina Women Place Second and Men 10th; Annie Bothma Claims Individual Title
DOTHAN, Ala. - The Coastal Carolina women's cross country team finished second and the men's team placed 10th in the Sun Belt championships. The meet was held at Trojan Oaks on the campus of Troy University and was the first Sun Belt Championshp appearance for the Chanticleers.
"I'm really proud of how hard we competed today. On the women's side, runner-up is a great result in our first year in the Sun Belt," said head coach Jeff Jacobs. "Annie Bothma, Aynslee van Graan and Kyla van Graan did a great job leading the way with all-conference finishes."
"Alesia Muklebust had a really well paced race to finish inside the top 20," Jacobs stated. "Alyssa LeClaire had a tough break taking a hard fall midway through the race, but rallied from 40th to finish 28th in the last mile. On the men's side Hutson Baumann gave a huge effort for all-conference honors."
Appalachian State took home the women's team championship by winning the meet with 43 points followed by Coastal with 56 and defending champs South Alabama with 79. Georgia State and UT-Arlington rounded out the top five with 112 and 141 points, respectively.
Sun Belt Runner of the Year and redshirt freshman Annie Bothma claimed the 5k individual title. The Stellenbosch, South Africa native narrowly missed her personal best with a time of 17:27.5 but won by a full 10 seconds.
The second top five finisher for the Chanticleers was junior Aynslee van Graan, who erned first team All-Sun Belt honors, placed third with a time of 17:43.1. Second team All-Conference honoree and senior Kyla van Graan was the next CCU runner to cross the line in seventh at 18:11.5.
The men's team placed 10th with a score of 226 points. Defending champions UT-Arlington won with 45 points, followed by UL-Lafayette 66, Texas State 88, Appalachian State 97 and South Alabama 129 rounded out the top five in the men's team event. UT-Arlingtions Craig Lautenslager came away with the men's 8k individual title.
Dillon McConnell, a freshman, finished in 53rd at 27:39.5, with sophomore Riaz Tyler not far behind in 55th with a time of 27:59.9. Junior Elijah Shaw came in 60th and senior Charles Bascom was 63rd with times of 28:58.5 and 30:34.3, respectively.
The NCAA Division I Southeast Regional which will be held at Panorama Farms in Earlysville, Va. will be the next meet for Coastal's cross country.