Thompson, Halcomb Lead UC Irvine at Cross Country Championships

With a cumulative score of 197 points, UC Irvine placed seventh at the Big West Cross Country Championships at the UC Riverside Agricultural Operations Course. The Anteaters were led by sophomore Isaiah Thompson, who finished in 12th place with a time of 24:36.6 in the individual men’s 8,000 meters race.
Thompson’s closest teammate would come in 48th place, posting a time of 25:47.2. Sophomore Jake Williams and senior Blake Wanser finished in 53rd and 54th with times of 26:02.0 and 26:06.2 respectively.
Rounding out the Anteaters’ standing was sophomore Nolan Del Valle (26:27.0) at 58th, Munir Kahssay (26:49.7) at 59th and Eric Enriquez (26:59.1) in 61st place.
UC Santa Barbara emerged victorious from the meet, led by Bryan Guijarro who earned the individual title with a time of 23:47.4, narrowly edging out teammate Anthony Ortolan who finished at 23:48.1. UC Santa Barbara placed four runners in the top five, with a school-record point total of 21. It is the first championship for the Gauchos since 2001 and the lowest point total accumulated at the men’s championship since 2008, where Cal Poly had 19. Defending champions Cal Poly placed second with 49 points, while host Riverside finished third with 95 points.
UC Irvine’s women’s team placed eighth at the Big West championships, posting a total of 194 points. Senior Kaycee Holcomb led the Anteaters with a time of 21:35.2 at the 6,000 meters course to finish in 16th.
Holcomb’s performance marked the fourth time the senior was the frontrunner for the Anteaters in a meet this season.
Following Holcomb was sophomore Alice Yang (22:41.4) in 42nd, followed by teammate Chelsea Schneider (22:46.2) for 43rd. Sophomore Pearl Law (23:18.1) finished in 52nd, with Lauren Hall (23:40.1) close behind at 59th.
Finishing for the Anteaters was sophomore Hannah Ruby (23:41.2) in 60th, senior Marthie Ponthy in 62nd (23:49.4) at 62nd and finally Courtney Sharar (24:40.7) in 66th place.
UC Davis captured its second Big West Cross Country championship, scoring 36 points to earn their first Big West title since 2011. Sophomore Christine Hoffman finished second for the Aggies, leading four of her teammates to the top nine in the process.
Defending championship Cal Poly also placed second in the women’s meet with 66 points, with UC Santa Barbara coming in third with 86 points.
The Anteaters will travel to Stanford for the NCAA West Regional on November 14.