Kemboi Caps Senior Season with Nationals Appearance

Kemboi Caps Senior Season with Nationals Appearance

Contact: Katie Parker,


LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Senior Gilbert Kemboi (Eldoret, Kenya) of the USC Upstate men's cross country team closed out his cross country career with a solid finish at the NCAA National Championships Saturday hosted by the University of Louisville.

Kemboi earned a 42nd-place finish at the National meet, just missing the top 40 by five seconds. He crossed the line with a time of 30:06.9.

"Gilbert ran a solid race," said Upstate Associate Head Coach Carson Blackwelder. "He put his self in the top 40 early on in the race. Finishing 42nd is tough because it is two spots from being an All-American."

With Kemboi's sixth-place finish at the Southeast Regionals Nov. 9, he qualified for Nationals, becoming the first athlete in Upstate's Division I era across all sports to advance to an NCAA Championship event.

"It has been a great season for our team and Gilbert," Blackwelder said. "We accomplished a lot of goals and Gilbert representing Upstate at Nationals was a great way to cap the season off."

The senior set a 10K school-record and personal-best time at Regionals with a 29:47.31 mark to collect All-Southeast Region accolades for the second-straight year. Kemboi led the Spartan men to 15th-place in the team standings at the region meet, marking the best finish for Upstate in program history.

Kemboi has been a contestant leader for the Spartans all season, helping them to their second-straight Atlantic Sun Conference Championship, while claiming his third consecutive individual A-Sun title. Kemboi was also named the 2012 A-Sun Scholar Athlete of the Year, an honor he won as a junior as well.   

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