Cross Country title streak comes to an end

GO CARDINALS <b>Matt Johnsen ended fifth on Friday at the SLC Championships.</b>
Matt Johnsen ended fifth on Friday at the SLC Championships.

Oct. 26, 2012

2012 Southland Championship Full Results 

BEAUMONT - For the first time since the 2003 season, Lamar will not be boasting of a Southland Conference Cross Country Championship as the men's team finished as runners-up and the women came in third at Henry Homberg Golf Course on Friday morning.

The Lamar men saw their streak of six consecutive titles broken by McNeese, and the women fell to Stephen F. Austin and Sam Houston State. The Cardinals entered the event having won either a men's or a women's title in each of the last eight seasons.

"We went out there to try and win both, and we just came up a little bit short," coach Darren Gauson said. "Now it's about getting ready for the Regional meet. I think we had a lot of people run like they have all year, and now we have two weeks to continue progressing."

Matt Johnsen led the way for LU with a fifth place finish, clocking in at 24:11.4 on the 8,000-meter course. Sam Stabler was the second Cardinal finisher at 24:41.9 to finish 12th.

Chris Jones and Joe Wade came in 15th and 16th, respectively, at 24:52.2 and 24:55.0, and Alex De La Garza rounded out the scoring for the Cards, ending 18th at 25:03.7.

"We had a couple guys fall back off a bit, but that's what happens when you're trying to win a meet," Gauson said. "It's hard to beat a team when they run as well as McNeese did."

Stu Huntington was less than a second off the pace, finishing 19th at 25:04.6, and Ryan Creech ended 26th with a time of 25:26.4. 



Michael Kershaw completed the course in 25:30.8.

On the women's side, Lamar was the first team to push five runners across, but couldn't overcome top-heavy SFA and SHSU, as they combined to account for five of the top eight finishers.

"I think the women did great," Gauson said. "When we started out the season, there were teams ranked ahead of us, and to come out and be in a position to win today was incredible. I think the women did an excellent job of preparing and executing."

Claire Miles led the way for the Lady Cards, coming in sixth with a time of 21:56.8 for the 6,000-meter course. As has been the case for much of the season, Becky Gough wasn't far behind her, ending 12th at 22:14.4.

Angela LaBorde and Kaitlynn Warren teamed up for 19th and 20th place, respectively, as LaBorde clocked in a 22:33.5 and Warren came in exactly one second later.

Laura Farrar, who was making her collegiate debut, was 23rd at 22:45.8.

Nora-Beth Saunders ended 34th at 23:24.6, Kelsey Young was 50th at 24:31.5, and Kim Campbell finished at 25:21.7.

Both teams will now have two weeks to regroup as they begin preparations for the NCAA Regional Championships in Fayetteville, Ark.


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