The Western Washington University Women’s cross country team placed second in the NCAA Division II West Regional on Saturday, Nov. 7, at Ash Creek Preserve in Monmouth, Ore., to earn an automatic qualification into the National Championship meet Nov. 21 in Joplin, Mo.
Senior Taylor Guenther earned USTFCCCA All-Region honors as the highest placing WWU racer in 6th place with a time of 21 minutes, 21.29 seconds on the 6,000-meter course (top 25 earn all-region honors).
The Vikings placed second in the meet with 165 points and a combined time of 1:50:09.71, trailing regional winner Chico State (89 points, 1:48:21.76 combined time). This is the highest finish for the women’s team at the regional meet since joining Division II. WWU will compete in the National Championship for the seventh time in the last eight seasons (finished 12th in 2014).
The men placed sixth in the regional field with 194 points and a combined time of 2:35:41.23 on the 10,000-meter course. By not finishing in the top four in the team standings, Western snapped a string of eight consecutive seasons qualifying for the NCAA II Men’s National Championship.
Sophomore Andrew Wise led the Vikings with a 14th-place finish in 30:22.33 to earn USTFCCCA All-Region honors.