D2 Outdoor Top 20: Update #8 (Men)


KEY

(Unranked)

Was not ranked the week before


(#/#)

First number indicates the change in a runner's ranking from week prior

Second number indicates where the runner was ranked last week

20. Christian Noble, Lee (Tenn.) (-3 / 17)

Noble finished 5th in the steeplechase at the national meet in what now seems like forever ago. The sophomore made a strong bid with three laps to go as he took the lead, but he ultimately suffered for it. The rest of the field sat on him and when it was time to go, he just didn’t have enough to stick with the leaders and ended with an 8:58. Still, it’s an improvement from his freshman year when he finished 7th. The performance sets up Noble for a strong future.


19. Wesley Kirui, Alaska Anchorage (Unranked)

Kirui had only raced three times before the national meet, but it didn't seem to phase him. Kirui crossed the line in 3rd place in the steeplechase final. He finished with a time of 8:56 and was just a second ahead of his teammate. He's just a sophomore and has set himself up for more success in the future.


18. Victor Moreau, Academy of Art (-4 / 14)

Moreau only came away with one solid race this weekend as he finished 7th in the 1500. He closed in 55 seconds, but it wasn’t enough given the tactical strategy that usually rears its head in championship settings. He ran 3:59.65 on the day and took home All-American honors, the first of his outdoor career. He came back for the 5000 later that day and finished 17th in a time of 15:08.


17. Benjamin Allen, Concordia St. Paul (Unranked)

Allen enters our rankings for the first time this season after a 4th place finish at the NCAA's. He was the last qualifier into the final and entered with a seed time of 3:45. He was able to close the final lap in 54.29 to help him move up three spots and take home his first ever All-American honor.


16. Tanner Chada, Grand Valley State (Unranked)

Chada is a freshman at Grand Valley and after his 3rd place finish in the 5000, it looks as if the program will continue to be in good hands. Chada ran 14:27 and almost replicated what the Lakers did last year in this event. After finishing 10th during the indoor season, it’s a huge improvement for Chada that will likely set him up for greater performances in the future.


15. Devundrick Walker, CSU-Pueblo (+1 / 16)

Walker capped off his career with yet another All-American honor. The senior finished in 6th place in the final race of his career with CSU-Pueblo. It’s the second straight national meet that he’s finished 6th and it gives him a total of seven All-American awards.


14. Charlie Sweeney, Western Colorado (Unranked)

The freshman Mountaineer attempted the 10k/5k double and didn’t succumb to the potential devastation that loomed with it. Sweeney finished 6th in the 10,000 on Thursday evening with a time of 31:13. He then came back on Saturday night and finished 5th in the 5,000. He ran 14:29 for the distance and has made himself a key component of the Western Colorado distance squad that will now turn their attention to cross country.


13. Jonah Theisen, Black Hills State (Unranked)

Theisen also enters our rankings for the first, and only time this season after an outstanding showing in the steeplechase. The senior finished 2nd in a time of 8:55 which is the fastest time he has run this year. It’s a strong bounce back for the guy who won this event as a freshman back in 2016, but hadn’t lived up to those expectations the last few years.


12. Luke Julian, Colorado Mines (+1 / 13)

Julian was the finisher just in front of Moreau in the 1500 (6th). He ran 3:59.55 and ran nine-tenths of a second faster on the last 400. It’s a strong showing for the freshman, but seeing how he came in with the #2 fastest seed time, It may be seen as a disappointing race. He also came back for the 5000 later in the night and ran 14:53 to finish 13th. Julian was just a freshman this past year so be on the lookout as he’ll be a household name.


11. Daniel Wallis, Queens (N.C.) (-6 / 5)

Wallis was considered one of the 1500 favorites, along with his teammate Wammetsberger, coming into the weekend. After making the final, Wallis didn’t have quite the success his teammate did as he failed to finish as an All-American and fell to 11th. However, just like he did during indoors, Wallis was able to come back later in the day and snag a 6th place finish in the 5,000 with a time of 14:29.


10. Dennis Mbuta, Grand Valley State (-2 / 8)

Mbuta opted to focus on the 800 and in doing so, came away with a 4th place finish. It’s a downgrade from where he finished during the indoor season, but when you look at the names that are in front of him it’s hard to argue that he’s not in elite territory. He ran 1:51.34 and finished just over half a second behind 3rd place. It’s the fourth All-American award that Mbuta has garnered in his short career as well.


9. Marcelo Laguera, CSU-Pueblo (0 / 9)

Laguera also attempted the 10k/5k double and saw himself have a strong national meet. After he upset Zach Panning earlier in the year during cross country, we weren’t sure what to think as he didn’t race during indoors. Well, he showed up during outdoors to the tune of a 2nd place finish in the 10,000 running 30:59 and then came back and finished 8th in the 5,000 with a time of 14:34. It’s a strong bookend to Laguera’s final season as he takes home two more All-American awards.


8. Ayman Zahafi, TAMU-Kingsville (+7 / 15)

Zahafi improved upon his 3rd place finish from the indoor season as he moved up to a 2nd place finish this time around. Zahafi ran 1:50.17 and was well ahead of the 3rd place finisher, but just ran out of room as he tried to chase down Thomas Staines. For Zahafi, it’s the end to a spectacular season that saw him set personal bests five different times on the season. He’s definitely going to be a contender for his remaining two years of his eligibility.


7. Taylor Stack, Western Colorado (0 / 7)

Stack entered the weekend with top marks in both of his events. The sophomore continued to build on a strong indoor season and he ultimately ended with a sixth-place finish in the steeplechase. He ran 8:58 and was just behind Christian Noble. Stack improved his placing in the 5,000 the next night as he finished fourth and ran 14:29. It’s the fourth All-American award for Stack this year. Expect more of the same in the future.


6. Felix Wammetsberger, Queens (N.C.) (0 / 6)

The reigning indoor mile champ was looking to defend his crown in the 1500. He came up short, but ended with a strong 3rd place finish after closing hard in 53 seconds. Wammetsberger was in last place entering the final lap and likely waited just a tad too long before making his final move. He still has a year to go with his eligibility and there’s no doubt that we’ll see his name near the top again next year.


5. Brett Meyer, Fort Hays State (+7 / 12)

It’s about damn time for Meyer. He’s been trying to take home the middle-distance title for the last four years and has come up short until now. The senior played his cards right and bided his time entering the final lap in 8th place. He closed in 53 seconds and moved up seven spots as he caught Elias Gedyon in the last 50 meters and won by half a second. It was one of the strongest performances of the weekend and it sent the Fort Hays athlete home with his first ever national title.


4. Leakey Kipkosgei, American International (+7 / 11)

We knew coming in that Kipkosgei was the favorite in the steeplechase. Going into the final lap, he held a lead that was under a second. When he crossed the finish line, he had run 8:52 and put three seconds on the field, walking away with his first national title. Kipkosgei has been an All-American in numerous races, but it might be safe to say that the steeple is his best event and with a year left of eligibility, we could see bigger things from him in 2020.


3. Elias Gedyon, Adams State (+1 / 4)

Gedyon capped off his two-year career at Adams State with two 2nd place finishes. He ran 3:58.74 in the 1500 where he was just out-kicked by Brett Meyer. It was an improvement from where he finished in the mile during indoors. A few hours later, he ran 14:24 to hang onto a silver medal after battling with Zach Panning for a bit in the 5000 meters.


2. Thomas Staines, CSU-Pueblo (+1 / 3)

Staines continued to dominate his event. He won his fourth straight NCAA title in the 800 and looked smooth while doing it. An easy prelim translated into a relatively easy final. He ran 1:50.03 and pulled up near the end. He's taken a hold of the half-mile and he doesn’t seem to be letting go of it any time soon. With his win, he’s etched his name into the record books as one of the greatest D2 athletes.


1. Zach Panning, Grand Valley State (0 / 1)

What’s better than two national titles? How about winning both in dominating fashion? In the 10k, Panning wasted no time and after the second lap had a five second lead over the rest of the field and never looked back en route to a 47-second victory. He came back and ran the 5000 and won that race by 14 seconds with a time of 14:10. This race was over after six laps as Panning continued to increase his lead and eventually moved it to 14 seconds by the end.

800

1. Thomas Staines (CSU-Pueblo)

2. Ayman Zahafi (TAMU-Kingsville)

3. Shaquille Dill (St. Augustines)

4. Dennis Mbuta (Grand Valley State)

5. Joshua Ajiero (Albany State)

1500

1. Brett Meyer (Fort Hays State)

2. Elias Gedyon (Adams State)

3. Felix Wammetsberger (Queens (N.C.))

4. Benjamin Allen (Concordia-St. Paul)

5. Josh Evans (Colorado Mines)


3000 Steeplechase

1. Leakey Kipkosgei (American International)

2. Jonah Theisen (Black Hills State)

3. Wesley Kirui (Alaska Anchorage)

4. Edwin Kangogo (Alaska Anchorage)

5. Christian Noble (Lee (Tenn.))


5000

1. Zach Panning (Grand Valley State)

2. Elias Gedyon (Adams State)

3. Tanner Chada (Grand Valley State)

4. Taylor Stack (Western Colorado)

5. Charlie Sweeney (Western Colorado)


10,000

1. Zach Panning (Grand Valley State)

2. Marcelo Laguera (CSU-Pueblo)

3. George McCartney (Malone)

4. Jack Mastandrea (Charleston (W.V.))

5. Luke Greer (Carson Newman)