Senior Mark Batres Earns Cross Country All-America Honors


Senior Mark Batres Earns Cross Country All-America Honors
Senior Mark Batres finishes in 10th place, earning All-America honors Nov. 19 in the NCAA Division II Cross Country championships.
The All-America award is the fourth for Batres so far in his Cal Poly Pomona career.

Cal Poly Pomona senior Mark Batres earned All-America honors for a third straight year by finishing in 10th place Nov. 19 in the NCAA Division II Cross Country championships at Prado Park. His finish is the best for a Cal Poly Pomona runner since Jose Rangel took ninth in 1997. Batres started off well back in the pack, but moved his way up strongly throughout the 10,000-meter race. His finishing time was 31:58.3.

Western State College's men and Adams State's women were the team winners in the NCAA Division II Cross Country championships. The Bronco men finished 14th for the second straight season. A total of 186 women and 182 men competed in the championships. The top 38 runners in each race earned All-America honors.

Batres put the finishing touches on an outstanding cross country season. Despite battling injuries early in the season, Batres finished fifth in the California Collegiate Athletic Association championships and earned All-CCAA honors for a fourth straight year. He was the CCAA individual champion in 2002. He finished third in the conference in 2003 and second in the conference in 2004.

He then went on to finish third in the West Regional, which was also held at Prado Park. Batres earned his fourth All-West Region honor in cross country with the finish. He was third in the region in 2002, fourth in 2003 and captured the West Region individual title in 2004. He has helped the Broncos qualify for the national championships for three straight seasons, something the program had not accomplished since 1984-86.

The All-America award is the fourth for Batres so far in his Cal Poly Pomona career. He earned his first All-American honor in 2003 when he finished 24th in the country in cross country, qualifying for the meet as an individual. He then earned a second All-America award in cross country in 2004 when he placed 35th. He also earned an All-America award in track and field when he finished fifth in the nation in the 10,000 meters in 2004 at Mt. San Antonio College.