A season to remember will continue for the University of Wyoming men’s cross country team after they received an at-large bid the NCAA Championships Saturday.

Wyoming finished in sixth place out of 17 teams at the NCAA Mountain Region Championships last Friday in Provo, UT. A trio of Cowboys garnered all-region honors for the first time in school history in juniors Paul Roberts, Chris Henry, and Harry Ewing. The team finish matched UW’s best-ever performance at the region meet that also was achieved in 2006, 2008, and 2010.

Roberts led the way, as he came in 11th place on the 10K course. His time was 29:27.4, which is the fastest in program history at the Mountain Region Championships, and second-fastest for a 10K at UW in a record book that goes back to 1990.

Henry took 17th place, with a time of 29:39.3, and improved 21 spots over last year’s region meet. Ewing moved up 29 spots from a year ago, and he placed 21st in 29:41.1.

Wyoming then got good news on Saturday, as they were selected as one of the teams to compete at this weekend’s NCAA Championships in Madison, WI. The Cowboys earned one of the at-large bids and are one of 31 squads out of 318 teams that advance to the national meet.

In a released statement from the University of Wyoming, men’s cross country coach Scott Dahlberg said,

“We’re really excited for the opportunity to represent the University of Wyoming at the NCAA National Championship as a team. This has been the goal we’ve had all season, and because of all the hard work these guys put in, their focus, belief, consistency and unity, they’ve made it a reality. We’re going to stop and take a moment to recognize this accomplishment, and then turn our focus to preparing for the race on Saturday.”

This is the first time the team has qualified for the NCAA Championships since 1986. There have been seven different runners that have competed individually since that year.

This is the most recent feat for the Cowboys this season. They were ranked in the coaches’ poll for the first time in school history, and as high as No. 13. Currently, they check in at No. 18. Wyoming achieved their ranking after they finished ahead of six ranked teams at the Pre-Nationals meet last month in Madison, WI. It’s the same course they’ll race on this coming Saturday, Nov. 17. UW came in fourth at the Mountain West Championships, where Roberts won the race and became the second in school history to do so. He was also named the MW Cross Country Athlete of the Year and First Team All-MW. Henry and Ewing earned Second Team All-MW.

The Cowgirls also raced last Friday at the Mountain Region Championships. They placed 12th out of 20 teams. Junior Ashley Bock improved 50 places over the previous year and came in 37th with a time of 21:01.8 on the 6K course.