by Benny Benton
NEW ORLEANS – Barton College senior Joel Lagat was named all-region in cross country for the third straight season by the U.S.Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) on Monday, while senior Sharon Kiptoo was honored for the second straight year.
Both were recognized after recording top-25 performances in the NCAA Division II Southeast Region on Saturday at the Wingate University Cross Country Facility.
Lagat, a resident of Eldoret, Kenya, completed the men's 10K course at Wingate in a time of 32:54.79 to finish 20th in a field of 153 runners. The mark was more than 30 seconds faster than his time on the same course two years ago when he finished eighth and advanced to nationals. Last season, he placed 21st in the region while competing in Montevallo, Ala.
Kiptoo, who is also from Eldoret, Kenya, crossed the line 22nd out of 159 runners in the 6K women's race on Saturday with a time of 23:26.2. She placed 17th a year ago at Montevallo.
They were among 398 athletes from 132 schools nationally who earned the distinction by placing among the top 25 individual finishers at one of eight NCAA Division II regionals held around the country last weekend.