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BYU and Portland Men Cross Country Teams Lead Historic Day at 2013 NCAA Championships

Nov. 23, 2013

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TERRE HAUTE, Ind. -- The BYU and Portland men's cross country teams led the West Coast Conference to a historic day at the 2013 NCAA Cross Country Championships. For the second time since 2011, two WCC teams finished in the top-10 in the team standings with the BYU men earning a 4th place podium finish, and the Portland men tying a program-best with a 7th place team finish. The combined finishes for BYU and Portland represent the best 1-2 finish in WCC men's cross country history.

"We ended up on the podium and that certainly was a huge goal for us this year," BYU head coach Ed Eyestone said. "I'm proud of the way the guys hung in there to get a podium spot. Tylor Thatcher really rose to the occasion and we benefitted from having Jared Ward back. He gave it his all. It's always good to finish on the podium."

Thatcher led the Cougars, finishing in 21st place for his second All-American finish in as many years. Ward, running in just his second race since having his eligibility reinstated, took 36th overall for his second straight All-American performance.

Redshirt junior Scott Fauble led the way for the Pilots and finished 13th overall. With that finish, he earned his third All-American certificate and second consecutive Cross Country All-American title after finishing 26th at last year's race. He traversed the muddy and sloppy 10k course in 30:21. Charlie McDonald saved his best for last as he was the second Pilot to cross the finish line. In his final race as a Pilot, McDonald ran 30:59 and placed 60th overall.

San Francisco sophomore Eric Causey, an individual qualifier, finished the 10k race in 31:24.4, good for 111th place overall, in his first NCAA Cross Country Championship race. "Eric got out and positioned himself well in the first half of the race, but just wasn't able to hold onto it the deeper he got in the race," San Francisco coach Helen Lehman-Winters said. "He was super tough, and he got some valuable experience today that will help in the future."

In the women's race, the San Francisco Dons earned an 18th place overall, while BYU finished in 28th place. "Overall we feel like we achieved our goals this year of getting to nationals and we know we are a good team and we proved it here," BYU head coach Patrick Shane said. "There are over 300 NCAA D1 teams that want to be here and we were 28th. We feel pretty good about that." Andrea Nelson Harrison led the way for the Cougars in the 6K race, sticking with the peloton and the top 100.

Courtesy of BYU, Portland and San Francisco Athletics.