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Chico State women’s cross country team takes first, while men place second at NCAA West Regionals

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The Chico State men's and women's cross country teams will be headed to the NCAA Championships. Photo courtesy of Gary Towne.

The Chico State men and women’s cross country teams have punched their tickets to the NCAA Championships, after the men came in second and the women came in first at the NCAA West Regionals race.

Men’s:

The Chico State mens cross country team placed second overall as a team Saturday, Nov. 7 at the NCAA West Regionals held in Monmouth, Oregon. They finished with a score of 79, 24 points behind first place winners Anchorage Alaska who scored 55.

The second place finish was enough to earn the Wildcats a trip to the NCAA Championships for the 17th straight year.

The ‘Cats were led by CCAA Men’s Runner of the Year junior Will Reyes who finished third overall in the race with a time of 29:36.6. Fellow teammate, junior Steven Martinez came in 10th with a time of 30:11.4. The two Wildcats earned All-West Regional Honors, along with teammates freshman Steve Velarde and junior Aaron Mora who finished 18th and 19th respectively with times of 30:29.3 and 30:32.4. Chico State had four runners in the top 20 finishers.

Women’s:

The Chico State women’s cross country team came in first, capturing the NCAA Western Regional title. The ‘Cats scored 89 points which beat out second place Western Washington by 76 points. This marks the 16th straight year that the women’s team will be going to the NCAA Championships.

The Wildcats were led by junior Sadie Gastelum who finished in third place with a time of 21:05.57, just a minute and three seconds behind first place finisher Chelimo Joyce from Anchorage Alaska.

Gastelum’s teammates, senior Quetta Peinado and junior McCall Habermehl joined her with All-West Regional Honors. Peinado came in eighth with a time of 21:27.5, and Habermehl finished 14th with a time of 21:38.30.

Chico State will be back hitting the trail for the final time this season on Nov. 21, in Joplin, Missouri for the NCAA Championships as they compete for national DII championship.

Jason Spies can be reached at [email protected] or @Jason_Spies on Twitter.

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