BYU takes third at Nationals, totals four All-Americans
STILLWATER, Oklahoma – Led by Casey Clinger, the BYU men’s cross country team tallied 132 points to claim third in the 2022 NCAA Cross Country Division I National Championships on Saturday at Greiner Family OSU Cross Country Course.
Clinger had his best finish yet in his fourth nationals appearance, crossing the line at 28:58.7 to take home seventh place.
For just the second time in program history and first since 2018, the Cougars totaled four All-Americans (top-40 finishers): Clinger at seventh, Brandon Garnica at 21st (29:21.7), Davin Thompson at 30th (29:28.8) and Creed Thompson crossing the line at 29:30.5 for 35th.
"One of our greatest strengths is our depth," said BYU men's cross country head coach Ed Eyestone. "When I saw them all working together from the start, I knew we would be in the hunt. They just kept chipping away and we were as high as second place around the 8k mark. Although we faded a little bit at the end, I was so proud of the determination of the guys to hold on. What you want to do is put yourself in a position to win the national meet, and they did that nicely. They executed very well on a tough course and held on for a podium spot. I'm happy with the way they competed."
Christian Allen - graduate transfer and 2021 All-American at Weber State - rounded out the top five for BYU with a 47th-place finish at 29:42.0. Junior Aidan Troutner finished just a second behind to take 48th overall.
Northern Arizona won for the third consecutive year off a tiebreak with Oklahoma State. Each team finished with 83 points.
The Cougars finished ahead of fourth-place Stanford (195 points), who was favored to win the title entering today. Wake Forest and Wisconsin took fifth and sixth, respectively.
By the midpoint of the race, BYU, Oklahoma State and Northern Arizona had separated themselves from the rest of the pack. NAU’s Nico Young and Drew Bosley, along with Stanford’s Charles Hicks, had about 10 seconds of separation for much of the latter half.
The next six runners, Clinger included, jockeyed for position in the final stretch. Each finished within two seconds of one another.
The team’s third-place finish marks the program’s fifth podium finish and fourth under Coach Eyestone. It also goes down as BYU’s 14th finish in the top-10 at nationals since 1983.
|Men's 10k Championship Team Results
|BYU Men's 10k Results
BYU cross country set to compete in 2022 NCAA Cross Country Championships
PROVO, Utah – No. 3/No. 10 BYU men’s and women’s cross country prepare to compete in the NCAA Cross Country Championships at Greiner Family OSU Cross Country Course in Stillwater, Oklahoma this week.
The men earned an automatic bid to nationals after finishing second at the NCAA Mountain Regional in Albuquerque, New Mexico last week, while the women received an at-large bid during the Selection Show last weekend.
NCAA Cross Country Championships
- Saturday, November 19
- Stillwater, Oklahoma
- Greiner Family OSU XC Course
- Women’s 6k: 9:20am CST
- Men’s 10k: 10:10am CST
- Meet Information
- Live Timing
BYU men’s cross country looks to win its second all-time team national championship and first since 2019 at Greiner Family OSU Cross Country Course on Saturday. Last year, Cougar standout and now Olympian-hopeful Conner Mantz took home his second straight individual title as the team took 7th-place overall.
Coming off an 8th-place individual finish at nationals last season, senior Casey Clinger now leads BYU into Saturday’s meet and aims to become just the fourth Cougar to win an NCAA individual title. The first BYU athlete to be crowned victor of the highest collegiate level was head coach Ed Eyestone in 1984.
Graduate transfer Christian Allen joins Clinger as BYU’s two athletes on the roster to have received All-American honors. The West Jordan, Utah native crossed the line at 29:17.0 last year in his final race with Weber State to place 16th overall.
The meet will mark senior Brandon Garnica’s 25th career meet after having finished with a career-best finish at regionals, placing fifth.
Several BYU athletes could make their nationals debut this Saturday, including key contributors Davin Thompson, Joey Nokes and Kenneth Rooks.
BYU women’s cross country will aim to add to its string of remarkable success at the NCAA Championships, having not placed below second as a team since 2018 in a run that included the program’s fifth national title in 2020-21.
Three of the Cougars’ expected runners this Saturday return from the 2020-21 National Championship team, including Aubrey Frentheway, Lexy Halladay-Lowry and McKenna Lee-Hansen. Frentheway and Halladay-Lowry are fresh off third and fourth-place finishes at last Friday’s Mountain Regionals, both crossing the line at 20:04.9 in the 6k.
Frentheway, a two-time All-American, leads the Cougars into Saturday’s meet after having finished 15th and 38th in the 2020-21 and 2021 Nationals, respectively. The meet will mark Halladay-Lowry’s third appearance in the NCAA Championships.
McKenna Lee-Hansen rounds out BYU’s top finishers this season, having placed in the top 20 in each of her four meets in 2022. Of her two NCAA National Championship appearances thus far, her best finish came in the 2020-21 campaign - a 41st-place finish that helped contribute to the Cougars’ national championship.
|2022 NCAA Division I Men's Cross Country National Championship Field
|2022 NCAA Division I Women's Cross Country National Championship Field