TERRE HAUTE, Ind. – In his first NCAA Cross Country Championship, Arkansas Razorback junior Dorian Ulrey picked up a sixth-place finish in the season finale on Monday in Terre Haute, Ind.
No. 19 Arkansas Razorback men’s cross country finished 26th in the team race with 535 points. Oklahoma State won the event with 127 points, Oregon was second with 143 points and Alabama rounded out the top three with 173 points. "Obviously Dorian was our bright spot today," head coach Chris Bucknam said. "He ran a smart race. Solomon Haile is disappointed he didn’t finish higher but this was his first NCAA Championships and he’ll learn from this experience. He has a bright future ahead of him."
"I know I can speak for our guys and we are disappointed," Bucknam said. "We thought finishing in the top 20 was realistic. We improved from last year but we wanted to take a bigger step from last year to this year."
Ulrey earned a sixth-place finish with his 10,000-meter time of 29:37.9. He matched his 10K best from the Chile Pepper Festival and was the No. 2 SEC runner in the race. He earned his first cross country All-America honor and his fifth certificate of 2009. "Today was a great way to start my NCAA cross country career," Ulrey said. "I wish the team could have felt the way I felt today but rest assured that this team has a lot of promise and ability. We can learn from today’s experience. I felt relaxed and got in a great rhythm early and it really paid off for me in the end." Ulrey’s finish is the highest for a Razorback since Peter Kosgei finished eighth in 2006. He is now the 49th student-athlete to earn the 90th All-America honor for Arkansas cross country.
Freshman Solomon Haile, in his NCAA Championships debut, finished 48th and crossed the finish line in a time of 30:27.8, just off his PR of 30:25. He was Arkansas’ second runner and was the third freshman finisher overall.
Senior Rio Reina, also in his NCAA Championships debut, was Arkansas’ third runner. He finished 197th with a 10K time of 31:55.3. Junior Lane Boyer was fourth for the Hogs and 198th overall. He finished with a time of 31:55.6. Sophomore Rick Elliott, also in his NCAA Championships debut, rounded out the Razorback scoring five in 200th place. He crossed the line in a time of 31:56.5.
Also competing for Arkansas were juniors Patrick Russell (215th, 32:22.7) and Michael Chinchar (219th, 32:26.7).
For complete results or more information, visit ArkansasRazorbacks.com or NCAA.com. The Razorbacks will start the indoor track season Jan. 8 with the Arkansas Invitational.