Adams State Sweeps NCAA DII Cross Country Team Titles

EVANSVILLE, Indiana – Alamosa, Colorado can officially call themselves “Sweep City.”

That’s because the Adams State Grizzlies took home both the men’s and women’s NCAA Division II Cross Country Championships team titles on Saturday at Angel Mounds in Evansville, Indiana.

This achievement isn’t anything new for the Grizzlies, as the program was the last to sweep the NCAA Division II Cross Country Championships, doing so back in 2009.

2017 NCAA Division II Cross Country Championships

Men’s Team Score Women’s Team Score
Adams State 44 Adams State 126
Grand Valley State 64 U-Mary 137
Colorado Mines 85 Cal Baptist 148
Western State 215 Chico State 179
Cal Baptist 229 Alaska Anchorage 180

The Adams State men had to fight off a few challenges from Grand Valley State and Colorado Mines throughout the race. The Orediggers led after 1,000 meters, but then were overtaken by Adams State, who led across the next 2,000 meters. At the 4K mark, the Lakers held a slight lead, but Adams State made that up by the next split and held on until the end. With 44 points, the Grizzlies defeated GVSU by 20 and Colorado Mines by 41. Western State (215) and Cal Baptist (229) rounded out the top-five.

Adams State’s five scorers all finished within the top-17, with Kale Adams (30:56.7) leading the way in third place. Elias Gedyon (31:09.3 – seventh), Joshua Joseph (31:12.2 – ninth), Lucio Ramirez (31:23.4 – 13th) and Sydney Gidabuday (31:31.6 – 17th) joined Adams in scoring for the Grizzlies.

Tiffin’s James Ngandu dominated the race individually, leading from the starting gun. The senior finished with a time of 30:18.8, which was 34 seconds ahead of runner-up Zach Panning of GVSU.

The women kicked off the day in grand fashion by picking up its second title in the last three years. Despite having only one top-10 finisher in Eilish Flanagan, who finished ninth with a time of 21:08.2, the well-rounded Grizzlies were the only squad to notch three top-20 scorers. Malena Grover (21:13.1 – 12th) and Roisin Flanagan (21:29.7 – 21st) scored 11 and 19 points, respectively, to help Adams State capture the victory.

It was a close race, though, as U-Mary scored 137 points to Adams State’s 126. Cal Baptist (148), Chico State (179) and Alaska Anchorage (180) finished third, fourth and fifth, respectively.

Individually, Alaska Anchorage’s Caroline Kurgat led from the 3K mark until crossing the finish line at 20:32.3, a full half-minute ahead of Sarah Berger from Walsh.