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Men's Cross Country/Track and Field

November 18, 2006

Jellema's All-America performance lifts Eagles to 13th


Paul Jellema

PENSACOLA, Fla.Junior Paul Jellema (Dyer, Indiana) earned All-America honors with his 24th-place performance as the University of Southern Indiana men's cross country team finished 13th at the NCAA II Championships Saturday morning.

The Screaming Eagles, who were ranked 23rd in the country prior to the meet, posted their best team finish at the national championships since 1997, when they finished eighth. USI finished with 390 points.

Jellema becomes the 11th runner in USI history to earn All-America honors in men's cross country. Joey Byrne was the last to do it in 2001. Only Elly Rono, who won the national championship in 1997, has earned All-America honors twice.

In addition to Jellema, sophomore Tim Sirbek (Hammond, Indiana) finished 76th, while junior Sam Gebreselassie (Avon, Indiana) finished 96th. Sophomore Joe Rayman (West Lafayette, Indiana) and freshman Matt Zielske (Elkhart, Indiana) were 123rd and 149th, respectively, while junior Justin Thomas (Indianapolis, Indiana) and senior Tristan Mannix (Crothersville, Indiana) finished 152nd and 165th, respectively.

Abilene Christian University won the team titles, while ACU's Nicodemus Naimadu won his third consecutive individual title.

Dan McDonnell,
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