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Idaho women win fourth-straight WAC

Idaho senior Hannah Kiser guided the Vandals’ women’s cross country team through the rain and wind and into the history books on Saturday afternoon.

Kiser won her second straight conference title and Idaho claimed its fourth straight team title at the Western Athletic Conference Championships at Jefferson Park Golf Course in Seattle.

The four-straight conference-titles is a first for an Idaho women’s team.

Kiser covered the 5,000-meter course in 17 minutes, 15.70 seconds and was voted WAC Cross Country Athlete of the Year.

Fellow senior Holly Stanton Browning was third in 18:04.70. Also finishing in the top 10 for Idaho was Halie Raudenbush (fifth; 18:18.80), Emily Paradis (sixth; 18:21.40) and Abby Larson (10th; 18:36.70).

The men’s team, led by freshman Nicholas Boersma, took second place – its best finish since 2007.

Boersma claimed the title after completing the 8,000-meter course in 25:26.70. Idaho’s Cody Helbling was second in 25:32.30 and Santos Vargas was third in 25:37.90.

Boersma became the Vandal men’s first individual conference champion since Vic Dyrgall won the Pacific Coast Conference title in 1941.

Boersma was named the WAC Freshman of the Year and Idaho’s Wayne Phipps was named WAC Women’s Coach of the Year for the sixth time.

• Willie Milam finished in ninth place and led the Gonzaga men to a fourth-place finish at the West Coast Conference Championships at Alumni Park in Malibu, Calif. Milam covered the 8,000-meter course in 24:12, besting Tate Kelly’s conference championship school-record, which was set last year. Milam earned All-WCC accolades, the first Bulldog to earn the honor since Chris Boyle in 2010. Nick Roche was 19th in 24:28. The Gonzaga women took fifth place. GU’s Lauren Bergam finished 11th, covering the 6,000-meter layout in 21:35.

• Andrew Gonzales took 15th and the Washington State men finished in sixth place at the Pac-12 Conference Championships at Coal Creek Golf Course in Louisville, Colo. Gonzales finished the 8,000-meter course in 25:33. Todd Wakefield was 19th in 25:50 and John Whelan was 30th in 26:01. Colorado won the team title for the third straight year. Washington was fifth. Ruby Roberts took 15th place and the WSU women were 10th as a team. Roberts covered the 6,000-meter course 22:09.

• The Eastern Washington men took fifth place and the women took seventh at the Big Sky Conference Championships at Bridger Creek Golf Course in Bozeman, Mont. Chris Schroll led the EWU men. Schroll finished the 8,000-meter layout in 25:20.38, good enough for 14th place. Eastern’s Vince Hamilton was 17th in 25:25.92 and Stephen Bottoms was 20th in 25:46.45. The Northern Arizona men claimed their sixth straight conference title. The Eagle women were led by Berenice Penaloza, who claimed 23rd after covering the 5,000-meter course in 17:50.

• Three Whitworth women finished in the top 10 and the Pirates took second place at the Northwest Confernece Championships at Downriver Golf Course in Spokane. Amanda Blankenship was fourth after covering the 6,000-meter course in 22:19.10. Christina Anderson was fifth in 22:31.29 and Kellyn Roiko was eighth in 22:48.49. The Whitworth men took sixth place. The Pirates’ Taylor Steele claimed 15th after covering the 8,000-meter course in 25:58.24. Willamette claimed the men’s and women’s team titles.

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