COLLEGE STATION, Texas -- Baylor women's cross country junior Maggie Montoya earned All-Region honors and a spot in the NCAA Championship field with a second-place finish in the NCAA South Central Regional Championships Friday at Watts Cross Country Course.
Meanwhile as a team, the Baylor women were fourth, while the BU men were sixth.
Montoya, who was 12th at the meet a season ago, moved up to second in 2015 by running the 6,000-meter course in a career-best time of 19:50.5. The runner-up finish earned Montoya a second-straight All-Region honor.
Behind the junior, Peyton Thomas produced her first All-Region accolade with a seventh-place finish in a personal-best of 20:10.4. Missing out on All-Region honors by one spot, Chelsea Orr was 26th in 20:49.5. Meanwhile, junior Alex Davis was 43rd in 21:18.7 and Ann-Marie Dunlap was 56th in 21:38.9.
Those five runners totaled a team score of 134 just two points behind SMU (132) for third and 11 points ahead of Rice (145). BU finished 29 points behind second-place Texas (105) for the final automatic qualifying spot for the national meet.
On the men's side, senior JR Hardy missed out on All-Region accolades by one spot, taking 26th in 31:05.5. Behind Hardy, Matt League was 37th in 31:28.8 and Eric Anderson was 40th with a time of 31:34.8. BU's final two runners were Kyle Scanlan (45th, 31:40.1) and Matt Parham (57th, 31:57.7).
As a team, the Baylor men tallied 192 points to finish in sixth behind Stephen F. Austin's 139 point total and ahead of North Texas' 238-point mark. It was BU's best finish for the men, since they were fourth in 2010.
Baylor last had an individual make the NCAA Championships in 2013 when Rachel Johnson qualified.
Montoya is the eighth women's individual NCAA qualifier in program history.
Baylor had at least two women's All-Region performers for the second-straight year.
Montoya ties Johnson's 2014 placing as Baylor's highest finisher at the regional meet since Erin Bedell was also second in 2008.
Montoya has been the top BU runner in all five of her races this fall.
Baylor's other runners on the women's side were Madie Zimmerman (57th, 21:39.1) and Leila Rohde (97th, 22:52.0).
Baylor's other runners on the men's side were Matt Galvin (69th, 32:15.2) and Seth Brown (101st, 32:59.8).
Arkansas and Texas were the men's automatic team qualifiers, while Arkansas and Texas took the two top spots on the women's side.
TOP QUOTE #1
"Maggie ran a fantastic race from start to finish. She looked really controlled throughout. She made sure she was secured in one of those top four individual spots. She is excited to go to nationals and try for an All-American honor." - head coach Todd Harbour on Maggie Montoya
TOP QUOTE #2
"I think we had five out of the seven girls run personal bests today. You take your hat off for that. Peyton ran a really smart race and just missed out on an automatic qualifying spot for the NCAA meet. We will have to see if she gets an at-large spot. There are two of those, so she has got a shot. Chelsea had a nice day as well and did everything she could do to put us in a position to try for a top-two finish. Alex and Annie were a little off today and we couldn't overcome it." -- Harbour on the women's team
TOP QUOTE #3
"My guys ran really well. They have been good this whole time. I am proud of them for moving up from where they were ranked. JR was one place from it being really special, but it was still a great effort on his part. I am really proud that all my seniors did well. They went out the right way." - assistant head coach Jon Capron on the men's team
Junior Maggie Montoya will compete as an individual at the 2015 NCAA Championship, which will be held Saturday, Nov. 21, in Louisville, Ky.