Oct. 27, 2012
SANTA CLARITA, Calif. - After finishing second the past two years, Stanford's Kathy Kroeger captured her first individual title at the Pac-12 Cross Country Championships on Saturday at the Robinson Ranch Golf Club.
The senior from Franklin, Tenn., covered the 6-kilometer (3.73-mile) course in 20 minutes, 6 seconds, to beat runner-up and 2010 champion Jordan Hasay of Oregon by four seconds. Kroeger led the Stanford women to third place.
In the 8K men's race, sophomore Joe Rosa paced Stanford to a second-place team finish, behind defending champion Colorado. Rosa's sixth-place paced the Cardinal top five to top-30 finishes. Stanford scored 82 points to finish just ahead of third-place Oregon (105) and fourth-place Arizona State (109). Colorado placed six runners in the top 14 on the way to scoring 69 points.
Arizona's Lawi Lalang successfully defended his individual men's title, covering the 4.97-mile course in 22:49, to edge teammate Stephen Sambu by one second. Each ran a 4:36-mile pace.
Following Kroeger, the Stanford women got a 10th place from Aisling Cuffe (20:32), 13th from Jessica Tonn (20:37), 22nd from Cayla Hatton (20:52), and 37th from Megan Lacy (21:25) to score 82 points in a tight team competition. The top four teams all were under 100 points, with Oregon scoring 47, followed by Arizona (69), Stanford, and Washington (92).
Kroeger became the first Stanford woman to win the conference title since Arianna Lambie won the last of her three consecutive Pac-10 championships in 2007. In all, five Stanford women have combined to win eight Pac-10/12 individual titles.
As a whole, the Pac-12 is regarded as the strongest cross-country conference in the nation. Four women's teams are among the top 6 in the USTFCCCA rankings, and three men's teams are among the top 8. Stanford's men entered the meet with a No. 3 national ranking, and the women were No. 4.
Stanford next competes at the NCAA West Regional Championships on Nov. 9 in Seattle, followed by the NCAA Championships on Nov. 17 in Louisville, Ky.