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October 3, 2023 10:34 am

UMO men’s cross country places ninth at Conference Carolinas Championships

SPARTANBURG, S.C. – The University of Mount Olive men’s cross country team placed ninth in the team standings on Nov. 5 at the Conference Carolinas Championships hosted at Roger Milliken Center.

The Trojans totaled 227 points at the event which featured 13 teams. UNC Pembroke captured the team championship behind five all-conference recipients, including the individual champion. Emmanuel placed second in the team standings with 52 points, while Southern Wesleyan finished third with 100 points.

Sophomore Aman Tsegay paced the team and finished 33rd overall after crossing the line with a time of 27 minutes, 10.6 seconds. A product of Southwest Guilford, he was competing in the championship event for the first time in his career and led the team for a fifth straight race. Fellow sophomore Riley Willcox finished one spot back in 34th place after posting a time of 27:18.6 with an average mile pace of 5:29.7 in his first appearance in the league meet.

Junior Nathaniel Bierly finished 42nd overall with a time of 27:56.8 on Saturday, while sophomore Mattia Marci completed the conference race in 60th place and posted a time of 28:31.3. Freshman Josh Hendren rounded out the team scorers at 67th overall after crossing the line in 28:58.8 in his debut at the league meet.

Sophomore Richard Villafranco posted a time of 29:11.8 to finish in 71st place and freshman Matthew Riggs registered a time of 29:56.2 to place 85th overall.

UNC Pembroke senior Joshua Chepkesir earned his fifth-career individual conference title by nearly 21 seconds with a time of 24:49.2.

— From University of Mount Olive Athletics