Saturday, November 11, 2017
by Wes Bloomquist |

NEWPORT NEWS, Virginia – Justin Tokuz led the UT Tyler men’s team and Rachel Willis the women on Saturday at the NCAA Division III South/Southeast Cross Country Championship on Saturday at the Lee Hall Mansion Course.

Tokuz ran a 26:26.2 on the 8K course to finish 72nd overall, while Willis crossed the 6K finish line in 23:25.6 for 65th on the women’s side. The UT Tyler men’s team finished 17th of 32 in the team standings and the women were 26th.

“I'm incredibly impressed with the improvement of the men and women,” UT Tyler coach Bob Hepler said. “The runners up north are incredible. The top runners are actually faster than many of the D1 and D2 runners that we face in Texas. Our athletes were able to step up and compete well. Our men's average team time was almost two minutes faster than last year.”

Nathan Adams ran a 26:34.3 for 85th overall followed by Will McIroy who finished 100th in a time of 26:42.3. UT Tyler freshman Matthew Cecotti was next for the Patriots crossing in 26:50.2 followed by Jace Seymour (27:14.8).

Grayson Reid won the meet with a run of 24:01.3 for Christopher Newport University.

On the women’s side, freshman Paulina Rodriguez was second behind Willis on Saturday by finishing in 24:04.4 which put her 88th overall in her first regional meet. Fellow freshman Theresa Simmons was next with a time of 26:08.3 followed by Amy Wyatt (26:31.6).

Gabrielle Stravach won the women’s race with a time of 20:59.7 for Emory.