GREENSBORO, N.C. – UNCG junior Paul Chelimo (Chebiemit, Kenya/Chebiemit Boys School) and sophomore Paul Katam (Eldoret, Kenya/Sacho) head to Louisville, Ky., for the 2012 NCAA Division I Cross Country National Championships held at E.P Tom Sawyer State Park Saturday with the men's race set for a 1:15 start. The National Championship race will be streamed live by the NCAA with a link available at www.uncgspartans.com.
"Both Paul Chelimo and Paul Katam are very high-level guys," head coach Linh Nguyen
said. "They both earned All-America honors in track and we hopefully will be bringing home to All-America awards in cross country this year."
Chelimo qualified for the NCAA Championships by finishing second overall in the NCAA Southeast Regional in Charlotte, completing the 10,000-meter race in a program-record time of 29:36.51. The two-time Southern Conference Runner of the Year won the league championship race for the second straight season beating his closet rival, Katam, by 15 seconds.
Chelimo will be making his second appearance in the NCAA Championships after he posted a 13th-place finish last season in a time of 29:39 in Terre Haute, Ind. He earned the program's first-ever All-America honor as he set a new program-record with his sub 30-minute time.
Katam earned his first bid to the NCAA Championships by placing fifth overall at the NCAA Southeast Regional. He posted a personal-best time if 29:43.62 in the 10,000-meter race in Charlotte becoming of the top four individuals not on qualifying teams to earn a spot in the national race.
Katam surpassed his previous career-mark in the 10,000-meter race by 1:13 over his time last year in the regionals as a freshman. He will be making his first ever appearance in the national championship race after just missing out last year with a 15th place finish in the regionals. He posted a second-place finish in the SoCon Championships race this season after earning SoCon Freshman of the Year accolades last fall.
- UNCG -