Braden Heads to NCAA Championships

What’s Happening In his final event as a member of the Boise State University cross country team, senior All-American Forest Braden will compete in the 2006 NCAA Cross Country Championships, Monday, at the LaVern Gibson Championship Course at Terre Haute, Ind.

This will be Braden’s third career appearance at the national championships. The 10,000-meter race is slated to begin at 1:15 p.m. (ET).

“Forest is one of the top runners in the nation,” cross country head coach David Welsh said. “He has had a great career as a Bronco, and we would like to see him go out on top. He definitely has the ability to finish very well at the NCAA championships.”

This Season Braden, the Western Athletic Conference Runner of the Year, was one of four individual runners to advance to the national championships from the NCAA West Regional Championships, Nov. 11. He finished sixth at the regional with a 10,000m time of 30-minutes, 24.43-seconds.

In six races this season, Braden has yet to finish outside of the top six. He captured his sixth and seventh career victories, respectively, at the Charles Bowles Invitational and the WAC Championships. He was the first Bronco in school history to win the conference championships individually.

At the Pre-National Invitational, Braden finished fifth on the same course that he will run for the national championships. The field included 45 of the top 60 teams in the nation, with a record 86 teams competing in either the White, Blue or Open races on the men’s side. Braden finished the 8,000m White race in 22:38.5, 24.5 seconds behind winner Josh McDougal of Liberty.

NCAA Career In 2004 Braden earned All-America status by finishing 24th at the NCAA Championships. His time in the 10,000m race was 31:31.7, less than a minute behind the national champion. It was only the fourth time a Bronco has earned cross country All-America honors, and he was the highest WAC finisher and had the fourth-best time of individuals from the west region.

At his first NCAA Championships in 2003, Braden finished 124th out of 254 competitors with a 10,000m time of 31:03.1.

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