The fall portion of the SEC cross country scheduled concluded last week with the SEC Championships in Baton Rouge, La. SEC programs competed in three different weekends leading up to the conference championship meet.
At the Commodore Classic on Sept. 19, Kentucky’s Matt Duvall bested a field of 40 runners to win the 8,000-meter in his first collegiate race. Alabama’s Jami Reed ran a strong race to win the women’s 6k, crossing the finish line with a personal best time of 20:57.5
The SEC Preview Meet was also held Sept. 19 at LSU. Ole Miss’ Mario Garcia Romo won the individual men’s 6K title, running 17:23.3. In the women’s race, Arkansas’ Taylor Ewert posted a career best time of 16:53.7, and lead the Razorbacks to a team victory with a perfect score of 15 points.
Missouri’s Sarah Chapman won the individual women’s 6k title at the second annual Gans Creek Classic with a time of 20:01.1 on Oct. 2. En route to her first title as a Mizzou runner, Chapman shattered her previous personal record by more than 45 seconds and the previous course record that was set last year by over a minute (21:12.4).
A number of SEC teams competed in the Florida State Invitational Oct. 2. Alabama’s Mercy Chelangat claimed the individual women’s title with a time of 16:50.3. Chelangat won her first cross country career individual title by five seconds to lead the Tide to a second-place finish in the team standings.
Arkansas’ Amon Kemboi produced an individual victory in his debut as a Razorback in leading Arkansas to a team win at UAB’s Blazer Classic Oct. 16. It was his first race since the 2019 NCAA Cross Country Championships. Kemboi won the 8,000m race in 23:25.5, the fastest time posted this season.
Tennessee’s Katie Thronson posted the second cross country victory of her collegiate career, placing first overall in the women’s race at the UAB Classic with a time of 20:13.15 over the six-kilometer course.
Arkansas claims SEC titles
Arkansas claimed the 2020 Southeastern Conference men’s and women’s cross country titles at the SEC Championships held Oct. 30 at the University Club in Baton Rouge, La.
This marks the 26th SEC crown for the Arkansas men, which is more than any other program. The Arkansas women’s team claimed its eighth consecutive SEC title and 21st overall, which also leads all programs. Garcia-Romo claimed the men’s individual 8K title with a time of 23:32.9. Chelangat took home with women’s 6K title in 19:46.5.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the NCAA Division I Men’s and Women’s Cross Country Championships were moved to March 15, 2021.