Chesang Runs In Hopes of Becoming an All-American
MANHATTAN, Kan. - After running a time of 30:02.16 to place second at the Midwest Regionals, senior Mathew Chesang will be running at the 2004 NCAA Championships on Monday, Nov. 22 at 12:15 p.m. in Terre Haute, Ind.
Chesang, the highest Wildcat male to place at regionals since Sadrack Kimeli won the race in 2001, automatically qualified for the NCAA Championships being one of the top-four competitors who’s team didn’t qualify for the meet.
Head coach Michael Smith has high hopes for the senior, who after only competing in three races this year, has not finished worse than third.
“We are hoping that he is in the hunt to be an All-American. I know he will race in the top-30, but he has to be able to do it for 10,000 meters,” said Smith.
Chesang will try to run a similar race to the previous two, in which he tries to make a move at the 5,000-meter mark. However, that may be a daunting task considering the field will be much tougher than the conference and regional meets.
“I’m hoping that if he’s there at 5,000 meters and things break open, that he’s sticks with it,” commented Smith. “There will probably be 30 guys that are as good as Mathew, so there probably won’t be a break. He needs to run more of a survival race than a running from the front race.”
If Chesang places in the top-30 to reach All-American status, he will be the first Wildcat male to do so since Francis O’Neill did so in 1992.
Chesang will be looking to cut his time from the 2003 NCAA Championships. Last year, he finished 128th with a time of 31:04.30. Coach Smith hopes Chesang can cut more than a mintue off his time, and feels that in doing so, Chesang would be in the top-30.
“The winner is going to finish 29-low, maybe 28-high. We are hoping Mathew can run under 30 minues. If he runs around 30 minutes or under, he will be pretty close to the top-30,” Smith said.
Results from the 2004 NCAA Championships will be available as soon as the results are verified by the NCAA. They will be posted on www.ncaasports.com/crosscountry and www.kstatesports.com.