UA men and women sweep at Chile Pepper

The Chile Pepper Festival is celebrating its 35th year in 2023.

FAYETTEVILLE — The Arkansas men’s and women’s cross country teams swept titles Friday at the Chile Pepper Festival at the Agri Park course in Fayetteville.

The Razorbacks’ No. 22-ranked men’s team won with 18 points led by a 1-2 finish from junior Kirami Yego and sophomore Ben Shearer. Western Colorado was second with 93 points.

Yego, a transfer from South Alabama, finished first in the 8,000 meters race in 23 minutes, 14.1 seconds. Shearer took second in 23:36.6.

The No. 20-ranked Arkansas women took the top four sports, led by freshman Paityn Noe’s victory, and won with 20 points. SMU was second with 89 points.

Noe won the 5,000 meters race in 16 minutes, 9.4 seconds.

The Razorbacks’ men’s team had six finishers in the top 10 with junior Elias Schreml fourth (24:04.4), sophomore Reuben Reina fifth (24:06.0), senior Myles Richter sixth (24:10.01) and junior Tommy Romanow 10th (24:32.04).

Arkansas State finished fourth in the men’s race with 158 points, the University of Central Arkansas placed 10th (334) and the University of Arkansas-Little Rock finished 18th (484).

In the women’s race, the Razorbacks took the top four places with sophomore Sydney Thorvaldson second (16:44.1), senior Laura Taborda third (16:49.8) and sophomore Heidi Nelson fourth (16:59.6).

Arkansas State freshman Rahel Broemmel was seventh (17:04.0).

Other finishers for the Razorbacks included sophomores Mia Cochran in 10th (17:15.0), Mary Ellen Eudaly 11th (17:17.0) and Mackenzie Rogers 12th (17:17.6)

Arkansas State was fifth (220), the UCA sixth (232), Ouachita Baptist 15th (450), Arkansas Tech 17th (500) and UALR 20th (559).

In the men’s race, Arkansas State had three finishers in the top 25 with juniors Rylan Brown 21st (24:51.30) and Dawson Mayberry 24th (24:54.20) and senjur Cash Kunkel 25th (24:57.0).

UCA was led by a 26th-place finish by sophomore Jack Dingman (24.57.9).

Arkansas State had three finishers in the top 25 in the women’s race with seniors Jaybe Shafelberger 18th (17:25.6) and Elizabeth Martin 21st (17:33.2). Senior Sara Steimel led UCA, taking 24th (17:40.3).