Mendez Finishes 15th at Big 12 Championships

 LAWRENCE, Kan. Sophomore Liliani Mendez finished 15th at the Big 12 cross country championships Friday, at Rim Rock Farm in Lawrence. The product of Dorado, Puerto Rico, turned in a time of 21:47.48 on the 6K course while leading the Wildcats for the fifth-straight event.


“Liliani ran a good race in a field of competitive runners,” said head coach Michael Smith. “This is a very deep and experienced Big 12 field. (Mendez) continues to run solid in every race she competes in.”


Mendez improved on her 67th-place finish from a year ago at the championships, beating her previous time by nearly two minutes.


Behind Mendez, K-State saw a solid individual performance by junior Morgan Bonds. The Hutchinson, Kan., native turned in a 60th-place showing and a time of 23:19.48. Freshman Lindsay Pierson finished 70th with a time of 23:39.07.


Alex Umberger led the Wildcat men’s squad for the first time this season, crossing the line at 26:27.30 with a 64th-place finish. This is the first time Umberger, a sophomore from Maize, Kan., has finished as K-State’s top runner during his young career.


Both the Colorado men’s and women’s teams took the Big 12 titles home on Friday. This is the men’s 11th-straight title and the women’s eighth-straight, last losing to Kansas State in 1998. K-State turned in a pair of 12th-place finishes this season.


Colby Wissel of Kansas won the men’s 8K event with a time of 24:34.40, securing Kansas’ third-straight individual win at the conference meet. Sally Kipyego of Texas Tech won the women’s race by a margin of 45 seconds.


Men’s Results:                                   Women’s Results:

64. Alex Umberger         26:27.30         15. Liliani Mendez              21:47.48

69. Colin Swaney           26:42.30         60. Morgan Bonds             23:19.48

70. Kory Cool                26:43.10         70. Lindsay Pierson            23:39.07

83. Tyler Fennema         27:13.50         81. Meg Gentry                  24:02.24

87. Danny Schneider      27:30.10         85. Megan-Anne Perrin       24:37.25

97. Hiral Bhakta             28:17.90         98. Emily Dittemore           27:30.69

99. Curtiss Feltner         28:36.70