Normal, Ill. -- Wichita State senior Aliphine Tuliamuk continued her remarkable season with another win at the Missouri Valley Conference women's cross country championship Saturday breaking the course record at the Weibring Golf Club. The Shocker women finished second as a team for the second consecutive year and the Wichita State men finished third at the 2012 MVC Cross Country Championship.
The Shocker women entered the meet having won six of the previous seven MVC team titles dating back to 2005. The Wichita State men posted the Shockers' highest team finish since also finishing third in 2003.
Tuliamuk, the 2011 MVC Women's All-Conference Athlete of the Year, led the entire race and eventually pulled away from the pack in the 5K women's race crossing the finish line in 16:58.35 - a Weibring Golf Club course record. She beat the second place finisher by 32 seconds. Temperatures hovered around 45 degrees with winds blowing between 15-20 mph throughout the entire race. Saturday marked Tuliamuk's fifth individual cross country win of the season in as many chances,
Tuliamuk's win also marked the third-straight individual women's conference championship for the Shockers and seventh overall. Tuliamuk won last years MVC championship as well.
"I thought Aliphine had a great run," head coach Kirk Hunter said. "To run under 17 on a windy day like today is really something monumental. I am extremely proud of her and our entire team," added Hunter.
"I was very pleased with the way that I ran today and with the way my teammates competed." Tuliamuk said. "It was very windy out hear and to break the course record is really special to me."
The Lady Shockers also had three other runners finish in the Top 25. Sophomore Kaitlyn McLeod took 12th place with a time of (18:02.39), Samantha Shukla was 20th overall (18:37), and senior Elida Bailon finished 23rd (18:15.83).
Illinois State won the women's team title for a second straight year.
"I thought our girls ran very well today," Hunter said. "Our top 5 runners ran better than they have all year and I think they gave all that they could have out here today." "This team has come a long way since the start of the season and all their hard work that they put in really showed today."
Southern Illinois won the men's 8K race with a team total of 34 points. Indiana State finished second with 40 points, and WSU was third with a total of 96 points.
Sophomore Sterling Spencer paced a pack of Shocker men with a 15th-place finish in 25:06. Senior Jake Wike finished right behind Spencer coming in 16th (25:08), senior Tomas Cotter was 18th (25:11), junior Kelvin Busienei 23rd (25:29), and junior Justic Scott was 24th (25:31).
"Our top five kept together," Hunter said. "Some of our guys really stepped up and put us in a lock for a third place finish. We keep improving year after year and I am happy for our guys and the great runs they put in today."
"I think going into the race we knew that we were a top-3 team in the conference," senior Jake Wike said. "Every year we improved in terms of placing at the conference meet and to finish in the top-3 my senior year is something special."
The Shockers cross country season continues Friday, Nov. 9 with the NCAA Midwest Regional meet at the Springfield Underground in Springfield, Mo.