Oct. 31, 2008
NACOGDOCHES, Texas -
The Lamar University men's and women's cross country teams will wrap up the regular season Monday morning at the 45th Southland Conference Cross Country Championship at the Piney Woods Country Club in Nacogdoches, Texas. The women's 6-kilometer race will begin at 9 a.m. and the men's 8-kilometer race will follow at 9:45 a.m.
The Lamar men are chasing their third straight championship and their eighth overall SLC title in school history. The Cardinals are currently tied with McNeese State and former SLC member Abilene Christian with seven team championships
The Lamar men are led by Samuel Kosgei and Francis Kasagule who have finished in the top 10 in all of their races this season. Kosgei took first place at the Notre Dame Invitational and second place at the Chile Pepper Festival and at the Baylor Twilight meet. Kasagule was first at Baylor and was ninth at Notre Dame and the Chile Pepper. Kosgei and Kasagule each have a second place finish at the SLC championship under their belts, Kasagule taking runner up a year ago and Kosgei doing so in 2006.
Drew Bean has had a solid sophomore season for the Cards, ranking as the No. 3 runner all season long. Last year he notched a 14th place finish to round out LU's top five finishers. This season he will be looking for an all conference finish in the top 10.
Hillary Samoei and Frank Bwambale round out the top five for LU, both running strong all for the Cardinals season long. Bwambale, a two-time all SLC performer, is seeking his third straight all conference selection. He grabbed a seventh place finish last year and was fifth in 2006. Samoei will be running in his first SLC championship after helping Iowa Central Community College to a NJCAA runner up finish a year ago.
Rounding out the lineup for the Cardinals will be Randy Becker
, Spencer Prudhomme
and Jared Rodriguez
. All three runners have had strong season for Lamar, and will look to leave their mark on the SLC field this year. Becker finished 16th last year and was 41st as a freshman in 2006. This will be the first SLC championship meet for Prudhomme and Rodriguez.
The Cardinals enter the meet ranked fourth in the South Central Region, two spots ahead of Texas A&M Corpus Christi. Other Southland schools ranked in the poll are McNeese State (7th), Stephen F. Austin (8th) and UT-Arlington who is 15th.
On the women's side the Lady Cardinals are in a rebuilding season after four straight top two finishes, including a run of three straight titles from 2004-2006.
A combination of young runners and injuries has hampered the Lady Cardinals all season. Top returning runner, senior Stacey Monteau, has been sidelined with an injury and will not participate in the SLC championship meet.
Lamar been led by freshman Sandy Castro who has turned in their top performances at Baylor and the Tiger Invitational in Auburn, Ala. and at the Chile Pepper Festival in Fayetteville, Ark. Rounding out the lineup for LU is Mercy Bungei, Daisy Cantu, Emily Carpenter, Taylor Cloy Maria Gutierrez and Mariaryeni Gutierrez.
Meet results can be found online at http://flashresults.com/flashtexas/slcxc08/ .