Gophers Set to Host B1G Meet
Oct. 28, 2016

2016 Big Ten Cross Country Championships
Date Sunday, Oct. 30, 2016
Location Les Bolstad Golf Course | Falcon Heights, Minn.
Meet Links Meet Home | Results | Traffic | Fanfest
Coverage @GopherMCCTF | Notes | Performance List
TV Big Ten Network (Live)
Stream BTN2Go

MINNEAPOLIS (GopherSports.com) -- The 106th season of men’s cross country at the University of Minnesota continues this weekend with the Gophers hosting the 2016 Big Ten Cross Country Championships at Les Bolstad Golf Course in Falcon Heights, Minn.

About the 2016 Big Ten Championship
Fourteen women's teams and 12 men's teams will toe the line at Les Bolstad Course for the 2016 Big Ten Cross Country Championship on Sunday. The women's six-kilometer race is scheduled to begin at 10 a.m. CT with the men's eight-kilometer race to follow at 11 a.m. CT. An awards presentation will follow at approximately 11:45 a.m.

Admission to the B1G Championship is free, and the fan-friendly atmosphere also include B1G Fan Fest located east of the driving range parking lot and west of the start/finish area. Fan fest will include face painting, yard games, music, concessions, a bouncy house for kids, and more.

Parking for the B1G meet is available in Lot S101 (on the corner of Cleveland and Commonwealth) and the Gortner Ave. Ramp. Shuttles will transport fans to the golf course. Fans are advised to park on city streets at your own risk.

Les Bolstad Golf Course is hosting the B1G Championship for the first time since 2005.

BTN to Broadcast B1G Meet Live
For the first time ever, the Big Ten Network will air the 2016 Big Ten Cross Country Championships live from Les Bolstad Golf Course. Coverage kicks off at 10 a.m. CT with Dan Kelly, Sara Kroll, Reed Connor and Ali Lucia providing commentary for the conference championships.

Welch Returns to Les Bolstad
Redshirt junior Matt Welch will run the eight-kilometer course at Les Bolstad Golf Course for the first time since his runner-up finish at this year’s Griak Invitational last month. His finish is tied for the second-best performance by a member of the Maroon & Gold in meet history – only Gophers All-American and 2016 Olympian Hassan Mead has placed higher (Mead won the race in 2009 and finished second in 2008). A native of Duluth, Minn., Welch graduated from Proctor High School -- the same high school as Gophers All-American and three-time Big Ten cross country champion Garry Bjorklund.

Gophers Return All-Big Ten Perfomer in Ali
Junior Obsa Ali returns to the conference meet as a Second Team All-Big Ten selection after finishing 14th at the 2015 meet. A native of Richfield, Minn., Ali led the Gophers at the Nuttycombe Wisconsin Invitational two weeks ago and also added a sixth-place finish earlier in the season at the Griak Invitational.

Lawrence to Lead Gophers
Redshirt junior Charlie Lawrence has been named team captain for the Maroon & Gold this season after a standout season in 2015. A native of Foley, Minn., Lawrence was an NCAA All-Region honoree last year and factored into the team's scoring in all six races that he competed in. He also set a new personal six-kilometer record (19:06.2) and matched his best finish as a Gopher (fifth) and personal eight-kilometer record (24:15.5).

New Look to Gophers Roster
The University of Minnesota men's cross country roster will boast seven newcomers in 2016 with Hamza Ali, Alec Basten, Owen Hoeft, Jack Manderscheid, Alex Plasencia, Nick Rink and Hunter Staack joining the Maroon & Gold. Eleven of Minnesota's 19 runners this year are either true freshmen or redshirt freshmen as the team looks to replace a talented senior class from one year ago that included All-Big Ten and NCAA All-Region selections Adam Zutz and Aaron Bartnik.

Blankenship, Mead Shine at Olympics
Gopher alums Ben Blankenship and Hassan Mead didn't disappoint in their Olympic debuts earlier this year in Rio de Janeiro. Blankenship finished eighth in the 1,500 meters (3:51.09) while Mead placed 11th in the 5,000 meters (13:09.81). Both competitors were All-Americans and Big Ten champions for the Gophers and Minnesota Director of Men's Track & Field and Cross Country Steve Plasencia.

Success Under Plasencia
Now in his 21st season at the helm of the Minnesota men's cross country program, Director of Men's Track & Field and Cross Country Steve Plasencia has continued to guide the Gophers program to successful season after successful season. During his 20-year tenure, the Gophers have earned 15 NCAA Championship bids as well as three NCAA regional titles. Plasencia has also coached the Gophers to a total of 12 All-America honors and 33 All-Big Ten honors. A two-time All-American for the Gophers, Plasencia still holds the school record for a 10-kilometer race. Plasencia was named the 2015 USTFCCCA Midwest Coach of the Year.




 

 

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