The NCAA regional championships are like the calm before the storm – when top teams must formally qualify for nationals before they can look forward to competing in Terre Haute. The Stanford men and Washington women won their respective West Regional races on Saturday to officially punch their tickets to NCAA’s on November 21.
Lawi Lalang of Arizona continued his undefeated season with a win in Palo Alto, finishing the 10,000 meter course in 28 minutes, 34 seconds. Chris Derrick led his Stanford team in second place 16 seconds behind Lalang. Portland teammates Alfred Kipchumba and Trevor Dunbar were next in third and fourth, respectively.
Stanford narrowly edged out Portland in the team competition, claiming the regional title with 50 points to the Pilots’ 53 points. Both earn automatic qualifying spots to nationals.
Cal Poly, the Big West conference championships, upset a number of Pac-12 schools to place third and likely earn a spot at the national championships. The Mustangs were led by senior Daniel Gonia in ninth place and junior David Cardona in 20th place.
Washington State continued its program’s progression with a fourth place finish. California was fifth while Oregon and UCLA tied for fifth. It is possible all these teams will earn bids to nationals.
Oregon’s Jordan Hasay bounced back from an off race at the Pac-12 championships to claim the individual West Regional win in 19 minutes, 44 seconds. Deborah Maier of Cal returned from an injury to finish second while Tara Erdmann of Loyola Marymount earned an individual bid to NCAA’s with a third place finish.
Washington placed all of its top five scorers in the top 14 and easily claimed the team victory with 50 points.
Arizona bounced back from a disappointing Pac-12 finish with a runner-up performance with 98 points. Stanford was third with 111 points while Oregon placed fourth with 12o points and Cal fifth with 141 points.
San Francisco is currently on the bubble for a NCAA bid. The Dons finished sixth in the region and will have to wait until the official announcement on Sunday to find out their fate.
**Update: The teams that qualified out of the West Region are Stanford, Portland, Cal Poly and Washington State for the men and Washington, Arizona, Stanford, Oregon, California and San Francisco for the women.
Find full results from the West Regional meet here.