Butler men take first at Isom Invitational, place five in top 15

Butler men take first at Isom Invitational, place five in top 15

With their third first-place finish in four meets, the Butler men dominated their home meet Monday by winning the Ollie Isom Invitational at Prairie Trails Golf Course.

Butler had all five point scorers finish in the top 15 individually while scoring 39 points to win the meet. Gillette (Wyo.) placed second with 55 points, while three Jayhawk Conference schools - Cloud County (110), Hutchinson (111) and Cowley (117) rounded out the top five teams.

Despite temperatures in the 90s and up to 25-mph wind gusts, the 8K race was a key tuneup for the postseason as the fourth-ranked Grizzlies ran the same course that will be used for the NJCAA National Championships in November.

"It was a brutal day today," said Butler head coach Ryan Turner. "Our kids showed great compsure and pateince in their races which helped them a lot (Gillette) ran without one of their top runners, so we expect the team scores to be a lot closer the next time we race them at Nationals."

Boniface Kiptoo was the Grizzlies' top individual, finishing third overall with a 27:03.04 time, while Eliud Koech (27:31.65, sixth) and Emmanuel Biwott (28:05.14, ninth) also placed in the top ten. Joel Santiago (29:07.38) and Juan Alvarez (29:10.76) finished 13th and 15th, respectively.

"It was nice seeing Joel Santiago have a breakthrough," Turner said. "He trains so hard each week and as a coach, we want him to be rewarded in a race for those efforts."

Other Grizzly runners were Jacob Hesse (30:29.47, 35th) and Hillary Kiptoo (30:39.37, 38th) 

Next up for Butler will be the Region VI Championships in Hutchinson on Saturday, Oct. 29. The Grizzlies will then host the NJCAA Cross Country Championships at Prairie Trails Golf Course on Saturday, Nov. 12.