The Grizzlies cross country team ended their season at the NJCAA Nationals in Tallhassee, Florida on Saturday and it was another successful race day for both the men and women.
The Grizzlies were led by Rodgers Rotich who was among the best runners in the country all season, and Saturday was no exception. Rotich, a freshman from Eldoret, Kenya, finished second overall, missing being a national champion by just 0.4 seconds. It was Colby's Sanele Masondo that edged out Rotich at the end after a back and fourth 8000 meter race. Rotich finished with a time of 24:07.6, a full 22 seconds ahead of the next closest finisher. Wail Bourahli was the next closest Grizzly, finishing 54th with a time of 27:08.1. The Grizzlies finished 10th nationally, with 256 points. They were the third highest Jayhawk Conference team, behind Northwest Tech along with Colby, who were crowned the 2022 Men's National Champions.
Rotich's finish was the highest individual finish for a Butler runner since 2005.
The Grizzly women were led by Heidi Grimmett who finished 54th with a time of 20:37.4. Mallory Boden finished just behind Grimmett in 55th with a 5K time of 20:40.2. Gabriella Gordon was third for the Grizzlies in 83rd with a time of 21:31.0. The Grizzlies finished 14th nationally with 393 points.
The Grizzlies will now shift their focus to the indoor track season that will begin in January with all of these runners competing on the track in mostly distance events.