SACRAMENTO, Calif. – The University of Arizona Cross Country team competed in their last meet of the 2023 season on Friday at the NCAA Western Regional Championships hosted by Sacramento State at the Haggin Oaks Golf Course. Ian Sanchez Lopez and Sailor Hutton were the top finishers for the men’s and women’s teams.
“Both the women’s and men’s team rose up to the occasion,” said Head Coach Bernard Lagat. “They all lined up and in a ‘Bear Down’ spirit, competed hard today. I’m proud of the work they’ve successfully done throughout the season to be able to do well in a tough region like this.”
Lagat added, “Our upperclassmen as well as our freshmen did well today. Freshmen, Michael Urbanski and Gibson Kibia stepped up in a major fashion to help our team finish 15th in the men’s section. Ian Sanchez Lopez, Noah Jodon and Brennan Foody’s final quarter of the race helped us in the overall team scoring today. For the women, Sailor Hutton capped off her collegiate cross country career as a top Wildcat, proofing her legacy as a competitive athlete and great leader for the team.”
Ian Sanchez Lopez was the top finisher for the Arizona Men in the team’s first 10k competition of the season. Sanchez Lopez finished 43rd overall with a time of 30:09.3 and was racing as high as 23rd at one point in the race. He has now finished first for the team in three consecutive meets. He was followed by freshman Michael Urbanski for the second straight competition, who finished 66th with a time of 30:38.9 in his first collegiate 10k. The team’s third, fourth, and fifth scoring runners were Noah Jodon, Brennan Foody, and freshman Gibson Kibia.
The Arizona Women were led by Sailor Hutton, as has been the case all season. The senior captain finished first for the team and 72nd overall in the 6k race with a time of 20:49.1. She has been the team’s top finisher in all their competitions this year. Hutton was followed by fellow senior Alisa Lyesina, who clocked a time of 21:36.1. Rounding out the team’s scoring runners were freshmen Sorcha Shiu and Sage Patzer, and senior Johnnie Mitchell.
On the men’s side, the Wildcats finished 15th overall out of 31 teams with a total score of 434. The team jumped two spots in the final half-mile of the race. For the women, the Wildcats placed 28th overall out of 39 teams with a total…