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Saint Lucia’s Tarik Xavier led his US college men’s team in cross country

By Terry Finisterre

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Tarik Xavier (Butler jersey)

Saint Lucian Tarik Xavier had another strong showing and Zadie St Louis finally got a race under her belt as the collegiate cross country circuit rolls on.

Butler Community College men and women competed at the Ollie Isom Invitational on Friday afternoon (October 18) at the El Dorado Legion Disc Golf Course.

The men finished runners up, thanks in no small part to the efforts of Saint Lucian freshman Tarik Xavier who led the Grizzlies with a 16:26.02 time in the five-kilometre run and finished eighth overall.

Sophomore Anton Reeves just missed a top 10 overall finish but scored ninth as Butler’s second-top runner with a time of 16:37.19. Freshman Timothy Kimeli (16:48.96) finished 13th overall and scored 10 points for the Grizzlies.

The men scored 53 points for a runner-up finish behind Cloud County’s 15, as the Thunderbirds dominated the 5K race with all six runners crossing the line before the other teams could get just one.

Butler’s final two runners for points — Luis Manqueros (17:32.37) and Juan Tovar (17:37.84) — placed consecutively at 18th and 19th overall.

Sophomore Jaden Dawson (18:02.65, 22nd) and Maquire Sole (18:36.46, 24th) also competed for the Grizzlies.

Meanwhile, on the women’s side, sophomore Michelle Sanchez took first overall while leading the Butler women to a first-place finish.

The Butler women had all five point scorers finish in the top 15 and scored 33 points, beating runner-up Pratt by 11 points.

With a time of 19:00.96, Sanchez crossed the finish line to win the women’s 5K and edged out Pratt’s Patricia Koma (3:54.42). Sanchez now has three top-five finishes on the season, with two coming on 5K courses.

Grizzly sophomore Shanique Masters (20:07.65) and Saint Lucian freshman St Louis (20:30.84) placed fourth and seventh overall, while Stephany Lechuga (20:57.18, 11th) and Hilda Kipruto (22:22.96, 17th) finished inside the top 20 overall.

For team scoring points, Lechuga finished ninth while Kipruto was 14th.

Other Butler women runners were freshman Victoria Duran (22:50.55, 21st) and Emily Tharp (24:40.87, 27th).

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