CORPUS CHRISTI – The Texas A&M - Corpus Christi cross country teams will travel to Fayetteville, Ark. to compete in the 24th Chile Pepper Festival on Saturday, Oct. 13. The men's 10k race will begin at 9:45 a.m. and the women's 6k will follow at 10:30 a.m. at Agri Park.
Live Results: Results will be available here.
2011 Chile Pepper Festival: Last season at the Chile Pepper Festival, the women's team finished 11th out of 34 teams in the 6k, despite missing critical runners, while the men's team finished 12th out of 32 teams in the 10k. Current Islanders BreAnna Briggs, Shelby Polasek, Cecilia Jones, Vanessa Galindo and Jasmine Boutte all competed. On the men's side, Patrick Kimeli clocked his fastest 10k time of his Islanders career, while leading the men's team with a time of 29:58.1. Current Islanders Christoph Hintz, Philipp Baar, Valentinas Rudys and Paul Hansel all competed.
Women's 6k: Briggs, Jones, Galindo and Boutte will all return to the course for the No. 9 ranked women's team along with freshmen Regina Salinas and Alexandra Fernandez. The Islanders will face fellow Southland opponents McNeese State, Northwestern State, Oral Roberts, Stephen F. Austin and Central Arkansas.
Men's 10k: Kimeli will lead the way for the No. 8 ranked men's team along with returners Baar, Hansel, Rudys and Hintz. Seniors Adrian Marquez and Daniel Barlow along with sophomore Abel Koskey will round out the men's team. The Islanders will also face Southland opponents McNeese State, Northwestern State, Oral Roberts, Stephen F. Austin and Central Arkansas.
Islanders in the Rankings: In the latest USTFCCCA South Central regional rankings the Islanders women's team maintained their No. 9 spot and remained in the top spot in the Southland. The men's team slipped two spots to No. 8 and third behind McNeese State (No. 4) and Lamar (No. 5).
SLC Honor: Briggs was named the Women's Southland Conference Cross Country Athlete of the Week, during the week of Monday, Oct. 2. Briggs led the women's team for the third straight race at the 13th annual Islanders Splash on Aug. 28. The Wasmego, Kan. native finished second with a 5k time of 18:12.7 to lead the women's team to a first-place finish. It was Briggs second Southland Conference weekly honor this season after being named the Athlete of the Week during the week of Sept. 4 for her performance at the Rio Grande Valley Classic. On the men's side, Kimeli received honorable mention accolades for his third-place finish at the Islanders Splash. The Eldoret, Kenya native clocked an 8k time of 26:07.0 to help the men's team clinch first place for the third straight year.
Islanders Head Coach Shawn Flanagan is in his 12th season as the head coach of the Islanders cross country team and 32nd season as a Division I coach. Flanagan started the cross country program in 2000. He has won four Southland women's titles, four Independent women's titles and three Independent men's titles. Altogether, Flanagan holds 30 Conference titles as head coach, including the 19 conference titles he won at UTSA. He also sealed three conference titles as an assistant coach at the University of Texas, totaling 33 Conference Championships to his name.
2011 Success: The women's team clinched their fourth Southland Conference title in five years while the men placed third at the conference meet. Kimeli advanced to the NCAA Championships for the second straight year.
Up Next: The Islanders will look to continue their success at the Southland Conference Championships on Friday, Oct. 26, in Beaumont, Texas, hosted by Lamar.
Keep up with the Islanders: For the latest information, follow Islanders Cross Country on Twitter (@IslandersTFXC) and Facebook (Texas A&M Corpus Christi Track & Field/Cross Country).