Cyclone Men Take Second at Big 12 Championships
WACO, Texas – The Iowa State men’s cross country team put on a thrilling performance today at the Big 12 Championships. The Cyclones finished second, upsetting two nationally ranked programs in No. 27 Oklahoma and No. 29 Texas. Oklahoma State, ranked No. 3 nationally, won the team title.
Iowa State director of track and field and cross country Martin Smith was very pleased with his team’s performance.
“The men ran extremely well today,” Smith said. “They were able to transfer all of the things that we have been working on in practice into a meet situation. Today it worked out, being able to finish second, tying our highest finish ever at the Big 12 meet.”
Iowa State placed all scorers within the top-20 finishers. Edward Kemboi (23:44.5), Alexander Dillenbeck (23:45.6) and Brian Llamas (23:46.3) finished 17th, 19th and 20th respectively. The 22-second spread across scoring runners was the tightest across all teams.
“Our split was extremely important,” Smith said. “Our split from our two to five runners was nine seconds which was great. We had a great pack and had nice insurance with our sixth man’s finish. It was a great team race.”
Smith was also quick to emphasize the strong leadership of Cyclone junior Alexander Dillenbeck throughout today’s race.
“Alex did a great job for us today,” Smith said. “He had the responsibility of being the leader of our pack. He made all of the quarterback decisions throughout the race. He read everything right and set the pace for the rest of the guys flawlessly. That goes unseen and was a great job of execution for our team strategy.”
Iowa State and Oklahoma State were the only programs to place all five scorers inside the top-20.
Texas Tech’s Kennedy Kithuka took home the individual title in 22:16.0.
The Iowa State women ran to their third consecutive conference title today. Click here to read the release.
1. Kennedy Kithuka (Texas Tech) 22:16.0; 7. MOHAMED HREZI (Iowa State) 23:24.1; 14. MARTIN COOLIDGE (Iowa State) 23:37.3; 17. EDWARD KEMBOI (Iowa State) 23:44.5; 19. ALEX DILLENBECK (Iowa State) 23:45.6; 20. BRIAN LLAMAS (Iowa State) 23:46.3; 24. TYLER JERMANN (Iowa State) 23:57.3; 43. STEPHEN SAYLOR (Iowa State) 24:36.6; 44. STEVE DADO (Iowa State) 24:38.4; 49. NICK SCHULZE (Iowa State) 24:58.3
1. Oklahoma State - 33
2. Iowa State - 77
3. Texas - 80
4. Oklahoma - 104
5. Texas Tech - 117
6. Kansas - 123
7. Baylor - 196
8. Kansas State - 259
9. TCU - 281