Sept. 6, 2009
MEMPHIS, Tenn. - After lightning delays, the Alabama men's cross country team was able to conclude their first meet of the 2009 season late Saturday night at the Memphis Twilight Invitational in Memphis, Tenn. with one athlete placing in the top five.
The Crimson Tide were paced by newcomer sophomore Moses Kiptoo who turned in a fourth place finish and a time of 19:25.63 after only being in the states for two weeks. In his first ever race at the Division 1 level, Kiptoo was beat only by two NCAA Champions at the Division I and II levels and an unattached runner.
Sophomores Austin Duckworth (21:03.71) and Nathan Corder (21:15.65) followed in 26th and 30th, respectively. Junior Stephen Payne was in that group as well finishing 34th with a time of 21:19.13.
Juniors Jeff Palmer (21:55.52) and David May (22:13.62) finished in 62nd and 77th, respectively, to round out the Crimson Tide finishers.
"Moses ran really well for his opening race I felt," cross country coach Joe Walker said. "Especially for just being in the country for two weeks. Overall, the team competed hard and we got some good work in. I'm excited and ready to get back to campus and get the team ready for the big picture down the road."
Barnabas Kirui of Ole Miss won the individual title with a time of 19:00.77.
In team scoring, South Alabama claimed the title with 43 points with Arkansas-Little Rock taking second with 80 points. Ole Miss (122), Alabama (136) and Samford (185) rounded out the top five.
There were 207 total athletes in the race and 25 teams that posted a score.
The Crimson Tide will take a week off from competition before hosting the 21st Annual Crimson Classic at Harry Pritchett Running Park on Sept. 18.