2,400 College Runners to Compete in Live in Lou Cross Country Classic at Sawyer State Park
Event on Track to be the Largest College Cross Country Meet in the Country in 2022
Wrap Around Event Features Kindergarten, Elementary, Middle and High School Races
Louisville, Ky. – Sept. 26, 2022 – The Louisville Sports Commission (LSC) will host 140 colleges and universities from 24 states at the 21st Annual Live in Lou Cross Country Classic on Sat., Oct. 1 at E.P. “Tom” Sawyer State Park (Sawyer). The Live in Lou Classic is tracking to be the nation’s largest college meet this season, attracting 2,400 athletes representing more than 250 teams from many of the top college cross country programs in the nation.
Three women’s and three men’s college races will be contested over the fan-friendly course; post-time for the first race on Saturday is 9:30 a.m. In addition, Eastern High School will host elementary school races on Friday (Sept. 30) starting at 5:15 p.m. and middle and high school races on Saturday starting at 1:30 p.m. The youth and prep races are expected to draw 3,200 runners from six states.
The Live in Lou Classic once again will feature one of the strongest fields assembled during the 2022 regular collegiate season with 28 men’s teams and 32 women’s teams that are currently ranked in the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA), National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division I Regional & National, NCAA Division II National and NCAA Division III National Cross Country Polls.
Competition is expected to be wide open for the men’s 8,000-meter Gold race. Teams that should be in contention are the University of Tennessee, currently receiving votes nationally and ranked no. 4 in the South Regional Coaches Poll; the duo out of the Mid-American conference University of Miami (OH), ranked no. 6 in the Great Lakes Regional Coaches Poll, and Eastern Michigan University, ranked no. 8 in the Great Lakes Regional Coaches Poll; and Grand Valley State University (MI), ranked no. 3 in the National D-II Coaches Poll.
The women’s 5,000-meter Gold race will showcase several of the nation’s top emerging cross country programs. Teams expected to contend include University of Tennessee, currently receiving votes nationally and ranked no. 4 in the South Regional Coaches Poll; Furman University, currently receiving votes nationally and ranked no. 3 in the Southeast Regional Coaches Poll; NCAA Division II power Grand Valley State University (MI), ranked no. 2 in the National NCAA Division II Coaches Poll; and Big 12 power West Virginia University, receiving votes nationally and ranked no. 4 in the Mid-Atlantic Regional Poll.
Individually, the men’s Gold race is on track to be one the finest early season matchups in the country. Runners expected to compete for a spot on the podium include Tennessee’s All-American triumvirate of Dylan Jacobs (2022 NCAA 10K champ 5,000 meter and 10,000 meter personal records of 13:14.04 and 28:01.94, respectively), Yaseen Abdalla (5,000 meter and 10,000 meter personal records of 13:33.26 and 28:33.38, respectively) and Karl Thiessen (10,000 meter personal record of 28:59.71); Grand Valley State’s NCAA Division II All-American Tanner Chada (fourth place last in year’s race and 5,000 meter and 10,000 meter personal records of 13:37.81 and 28:46.14, respectively); Eastern Michigan’s All-American Baldvin Magnussou (3,000 meter and 5,000 meter personal records of 7:47.51 and 13:32.47, respectively); and local harrier out of Louisville Ian Kibiwot (5,000 meter personal record of 13:45.31), coming off a strong showing two weeks ago at North Alabama’s showcase meet.
The women’s individual race will showcase several of the top collegiate runners in the U.S. Expected to lead the way are West Virginia’s Ceile McCabe (the defending Live in Lou Classic Champion, multi-time All-American, 3,000 meter and 3,000 Steeplechase personal records of 8:52.52 and 9:31.14, respectively); Furman’s five-time Southern Conference champion Bethany Graham (2021 cross country All-American 5,000 meter personal record of 15:57.92); Miami (OH) tandem Ava Nuttall (All-MAC 10,000 meter personal record of 33:38.00) and Carmen Riano (2022 All-American with 3,000 Steeplechase and 5,000 meter personal records of 9:46.91 and 16:00.30, respectively); West Texas A&M’s phenom Florance Uwajeneze (2019 JUCO Champ, NCAA Division II runner-up, 5,000 meter and 10,000 meter personal records of 16:10.32 and 34:24.70, respectively); and Lindsey Lakes from High Point (NC), emerging cross country frontrunner and winner of the 2022 Covered Bridge Invite.
The Blue and Silver collegiate races, also contested at 8,000 meters for men and 5,000 meters for women, will feature one of the strongest NAIA regular season fields, with 10 men’s and 10 women’s nationally ranked teams as well as a number of regionally ranked programs.
Practice time for college teams is 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Friday.
Eastern High School will host a series of races for school-age kids on Friday and Saturday on the same course. Kindergarten and elementary school races will be contested at Sawyer on Friday starting at 5 p.m. Middle and high school races will be contested on Saturday starting at 1:30 p.m. with teams from Kentucky, Missouri, Indiana, West Virginia, Tennessee and Ohio.
Live results will be posted at: https://www.flashresults.com/2023_Meets/xc/LouisvilleClassic/
E.P. “Tom” Sawyer State Park
3000 Freys Hill Road
Louisville, KY 40241
For any further information on race day please contact:
• Nick Kopka, operations director (812) 697-9632
• David Lawhorn, meet director (502) 330-1933.
COLLEGE SCHEDULE OF EVENTS SATURDAY, Sat., Oct. 1
Men’s 8,000-meter Gold race 9:30 a.m.
Women’s 5,000-meter Gold race 10:15 a.m.
Men’s 8,000-meter Blue race 10:45 a.m.
Women’s 5,000-meter Blue race 11:30 a.m.
Men’s 8,000-meter Silver race 12 p.m.
Women’s 5,000-meter Silver race 12:45 p.m.
High School events anticipated to start at 1:30 p.m.
K THROUGH ELEMENTARY SCHOOL EVENTS SCHEDULE / Fri., Sept. 30
Kindergarten / first grade 1200 meters 5 p.m.
Boys 3rd Grade and Under 2K 5:20 p.m.
Girls 3rd Grade and Under 2K 5:40 p.m.
Boys 5th Grade and Under 6 p.m.
Girls 5th Grade and Under 6:30 p.m.
MIDDLE AND HIGH SCHOOL EVENTS SCHEDULE / Sat., Oct. 1
High School Boys Varsity Invite 5K 1:30 p.m.
High School Girls Varsity Invite 5K 2 p.m.
High School Boys JV Open 5K 2:30 p.m.
High School Girls JV Open 5K 3 p.m.
Middle School Boys 4K 3:45 p.m.
Middle School Girls 4K 4:15 p.m.