Vaughan leads Gold Nuggets to 11th straight GCAC cross country title

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CLINTON, Miss. — Maliya Vaughan dethroned teammate Taylor Price and led Xavier University of Louisiana to an 11th consecutive Gulf Coast Athletic Conference team championship in women’s cross country Friday morning.

Vaughan, a junior from Elk Grove, Calif., ran 5,000 meters in 20 minutes, 43.50 seconds to become the sixth Gold Nugget to win the GCAC individual title. Price, a sophomore, was second in 20:52.48.

XULA junior Brianna Pace was next in 21:47.82, giving her a second straight third-place finish at conference. The Gold Nuggets swept the top three spots at this meet for the second consecutive year.

XULA won the women’s team scoring with 23 points, followed by Edward Waters with 50 and Dillard with 71.

In the 8,000-meter men’s race, freshman Camren Sewell led most of the distance before finishing second in 29:27.13. Edward Waters outscored the Gold Rush 45-64 to end XULA’s 10-season reign as men’s team champion. A year ago XULA outscored Edward Waters 35-36 for the title.

The Gold Nuggets and Sewell qualified for the NAIA National Championships Nov. 18 at Vancouver, Wash — the Gold Nuggets by virtue of their GCAC team title, Sewell as one of the top four men’s finishers not on the winning EWC team.

Earning All-GCAC honors because of top-10 individual finishes were Vaughan, Price, Pace, Carlie Calais (seventh place, 22:22.06) and Hajjia Mohammed (10th, 23:11.07) of the Nuggets and Sewell and Darrick Williams (10th, 31:15.79) of the Rush.

XULA’s Joseph Moses was voted GCAC Coach of the Year on the women’s side for the eighth consecutive season and the 10th time in 11 seasons.

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