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Young APSU Govs ready for NCAA South Regional, Friday

APSU Sports Information

Austin Peay State University Governors - APSUTallahassee, FL – Three members of the Austin Peay State University men’s cross country team – Wesley Gray [1], Hezron Kiptoo [2] and Tyler Smith [3] – will compete in the NCAA South Region Cross Country Championships, Friday.

The men’s 10K will be held at the Apalachee Regional Park beginning at 8:30am.

Austin Peay Men's Cross County has three member in NCAA South Regional. (APSU Sports Information) [4]

Austin Peay Men’s Cross County has three member in NCAA South Regional. (APSU Sports Information)

Twenty-four full teams are entered into the field, including the hosts and defending champion Florida State, while Auburn, Austin Peay, Jacksonville, Kennesaw State, Mercer and Stetson will send a select few.

Coming off a team-best 28th place finish at the OVC Championships, Gray is no stranger to 10K events. Last year, Gray was one of three APSU men’s runners to participate in the NCAA Regional, finishing 77th as a freshman. Now in his second season, Gray has a chance to take another step forward and challenge the region’s elite.

Meanwhile, Kiptoo and Smith will make their 10K debuts on Friday. Kiptoo posted three top 20 finishes in his debut season, along with finishing top three among fellow Govs runners in all seven meets.

Smith has impressed in his first season in Clarksville, with four top 30 finishes thus far. He’s also coming off a solid 36th-place showing at the OVC Championships, and has proven to be a big addition for head coach Doug Molnar [5]‘s young squad.

“These three have run well all year long and this is a reward for their efforts this year,” Molnar said. “This will be the first 10K for Tyler and Kip ever while this is the first 10K of the year for Wesley. They will face the best runners in the South on a great course. A solid run at this meet can propel you to the next level.

“These three have the ability to take that step and be some of the premier runners in the OVC. It’s just a matter of time. These guys are good and are going to be great. We are very excited to see how this plays out.”