LSU's Morgan Shuetz
Photo by: LSUsports.net, LSU Athletics Publications
Three on LSWA All-State Cross Country Teams
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Published: December 07, 2013, 11:00 PM (CT)
by Jordan Bergeron, Student Assistant SID

By Pam LaFosse for LSWA

LAKE CHARLES -- Loyola’s junior Paul Freese has been named the 2013 Louisiana Sports Writers Association’s Men’s Cross Country Athlete of the Year. Freese, the native of New Orleans, earned all-SSAC honors after finishing in 10th place.

Freese became the first male NAIA Nationals qualifier for Loyola since 2009. He finished the 8K course in 27:48.51, the sixth fastest Nationals time in Loyola history. Freese qualified after finishing 10th in the men’s 8K race at the SSAC Championships with a personal best of 26:30.12. That time was the fourth fastest mark in school history and Freese’s third appearance on the school’s all-time Top 10 list.

Following an early season injury, Freese completed his first full race at the Crimson Classic where he ran 27:53 before besting that with a 26:53 mark at the Sand Shark Invitational, where he posted the eighth fastest 8K in Loyola history.

Louisiana Tech’s Paul Sakit was named the newcomer of the year. The sophomore from Kitale, Kenya earned All-Conference USA third team honors. Sakit dominated the season, placing as Louisiana Tech’s top runner in every meet except the NCAA Regionals. Sakit’s top times throughout the season pushed Louisiana Tech into the USTFCCCA Regional Rankings for first time in program history. He is the first all-conference runner from Louisiana Tech in almost a decade. Sakit ran top 8k time of 25:54.87 at C-USA Championships followed by a 26:09.30 time at the Chile Pepper Festival and led the team at Crimson Classic with time of 25:35 helping Bulldogs defeat all other Louisiana teams.

Louisiana-Monroe’s Dusan Makevic and Louisiana-Lafayette’s Logan Pearce were named co-Freshmen of the Year.

Makevic, a navtice of Sabac, Serbia was Sun Belt All-Conference Third-Team selection after placing 13th at the Championships with a 26:16.7 time. Makevic set a personal-record of 25:56.8 at the 8K Chile Pepper Festival and finished fourth at the Warhawk Invitational with a 27:34 in the 8K. He recorded a Top 15 finish at the Hurricane Festival, Top 5 at the UTA Invitational that helped the team to a second-place finish and a clocking of 26:02.48 as ULM’s second finisher in the 8K at the Crimson Classic.

Pearce, a native of Monroe, finished as the Cajuns’ top runner in all six events he competed in during the season. He earned three top-10 finishes on the season and finished second overall to lead Ragin’ Cajuns at Azalea City Classic, completing 8K course in 24:55.52. He also placed eighth overall at the McNeese State Cowboy Stampede and 10th at the Florida State Invitational. Pearce was named the Sun Belt Conference Male Runner of the Week twice.

Xavier’s Joseph Moses was named the GCAC coach of the year for the eighth time after leading the Gold Rush to an eighth consecutive conference championship. His team also won the Mississippi College Opener. The .692 winning percentage (18-8) was XU’s best since the program was reinstated in 1994. Moses coached the GCAC individual champion for the fifth straight year.

2013 Men’s All-Louisiana Cross Country Teams

Men
Paul Freese, Loyola
Kwame Jackson, Xavier
Dusan Makevic, ULM
Logan Pearce, Louisiana-Lafayette
Philip Primeaux, LSU
Paul Sakit, Louisiana Tech
Adam Yohanan, Tulane

Athlete of the Year
Paul Freese, Loyola

Newcomer of the Year
Paul Sakit, Louisiana Tech

Co-Freshman of the Year
Dusan Makevic, ULM
Logan Pearce, Louisiana-Lafayette

Coach of the Year
Joseph Moses

Xavier’s Fakler and Loyola’s Canegitta Earn All-Louisiana Women’s Cross Country Top Honors

LAKE CHARLES -- Xavier’s Catherine Fakler has been named the 2013 Louisiana Sports Writers Association’s Women’s Cross Country Athlete of the Year.

Fakler, a junior from Phoenix, Arizona, was an all-GCAC performer and GCAC Runner of the Week five times during the season. She won the 5K at the GCAC Championships with a clocking of 18:08.32 which is a school record and best at the GCAC meet since 1998. In five meets before nationals, Fakler was 249-6 vs. all runners, broke the school 5K record twice and the 4K record once. She is the second female in the program's 19-year history to post victories in consecutive races. Fakler also had three third place finished and led Xavier to eighth consecutive GCAC team championships. She was named the Daktronics-NAIA Scholar Athlete with a 4.0 GPA.

Louisiana-Monroe’s Pauline Muiruri was named the Newcomer of the Year. The Washin, Gishu, Kenya native was the ULM Warhawk Invitational champion with a 5K time of 21:29. She produced a personal-record of 18:58.38 in the 5K at the Crimson Classic and crossed the line as ULM’s top finisher in every meet on the season. Muiruri posted a top-20 time of 12:32 in the two-mile race at the season opener Hurricane Festival, a top-15 at the UTA Invitational and ran a 20:01.8 in the 5K at the Chile Pepper Festival.

Louisiana-Lafayette’s Claire Hodges and Tulane’s Katharine Smiley were named co-Freshmen of the Year.

The native of Kingwood, Texas, Hodges earned four top-20 performances in her inaugural season with the Ragin’ Cajuns. She competed in all six events on the season and finished ninth overall at both the McNeese State Cowboy Stampede and the UALR Invitational while placing 10th overall at the Azalea City Classic. She also finished 18th overall at the Florida State Invitational covering the 5K course in a season-best 18:30.61.

The native of Danville, California, Smiley was one of the top freshmen to ever compete for the Tulane Green Wave on the cross country circuit. She competed in all four regular season meets, as well as the Conference USA Championships and the NCAA South Central Regional. Smiley played an integral role in helping the Tulane capture two meet titles, including the 6K Relay at New Orleans and the McNeese State Cowboy Stampede. She led the Green Wave at the Azalea City Classic, placing 17th in a time of 22:31, a personal best in the 6K and also led the Green Wave at the Conference USA Championships, finishing in a time of 19:03.63. Smiley came in sixth place at the McNeese State Cowboy Stampede, finishing in 19:04.05 and ran a personal best in the 5K with a time of 18:52.61 at the Crimson Classic. She tied for third place at the UNO 6K Relay, finishing with a combined time of 24:21.64 and ran a 23:20.30 time at the NCAA South Central Regionals.

Loyola’s Andy Canegitta was named the coach of the year after helping the Pack program to one of their best seasons in school history. The womens team set four of the five fastest times in school history this season. The team took home first place at the Fifth Annual Loyola Wolf Pack Invitational. Six of the seven girls ran faster at the SSAC Championships in 2013 than they did on the same course in 2012, including three girls who were more than 65 seconds faster. The team average at the SSAC Championships was 64 seconds faster than 2012. The Wolf Pack were the first team to have five runners cross the finish line at the 2013 SSAC Championships and the only school to have all runners defeat the 20 minute plateau. Overall, Loyola sent four runners to the NAIA Nationals for the first time since 2004.

Women
Andria Aguilar, LSU
Tessni Carruthers, Nicholls
Catherine Fakler, Xavier
Pauline Muiruri, ULM
Katherine Smiley, Tulane
Amy Talbot, McNeese
Morgan Schuetz, LSU

Athlete of the Year
Catherine Fakler, Xavier

Newcomer of the Year
Pauline Muiruri, ULM

Co-Freshman of the Year
Claire Hodges, Louisiana-Lafayette
Katharine Smile, Tulane

Coach of the Year
Andy Canegitta, Loyola

 

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