Pair of runners earn All-American status at NCAAs


Photo courtesy of UA Athletics

Hunter Jones, Contributing Writer

 The Alabama men’s cross country team placed 24th at the 2019 NCAA Cross Country Championships at Terre Haute, Indiana, on Saturday. It’s Alabama’s 15th top-25 NCAA finish in school history.

Graduates Vincent Kiprop and Gilbert Kigen led Alabama’s individual finishes, with both placing in the top 10. Kiprop finished fifth with a time of 30:43.5 and Kigen finished ninth at 30:57.2. Kigen and Kiprop were both awarded their second All-American honors, joining Tim Broe, David Kimani and Alfred Chelanga as the Crimson Tide’s only two-time cross country All-Americans.

“This is not the way we wanted to finish, but we’re proud of the guts for battling through tough conditions and the adversity we faced today to hang on for a 24th-place finish,” coach Dan Waters said in a press release. “Really proud of Vincent and Gilbert for carrying us through this season.”

The next to finish was senior J.P. Brinyark (33:29.7), finishing 214th, followed by junior Elliot Miller (33:40.6) placing 223rd, junior Elliot Gindi (34:18.5) coming in 237th and freshman Jacob Wiggers (35:15.2) finishing 244th. Sophomore Noel Rotich did not finish after suffering a back injury.

With the cross country season over, Alabama will get ready for the upcoming indoor track and field season, which begins Jan. 10 at the UAB Blazer Invitational in Birmingham, Alabama.