Paul Katam: Courtesy UNCG Athletics
Written By UNCG Sports Information Dept.
EUGENE, Ore. - UNCG sophomore runner Paul Katam (Eldoret, Kenya/Sacho) will vie for a shot at a national championship Thursday evening as he is one of 24 runners in the 2013 NCAA Outdoor Track National Championship 10,000-meter race at historic Hayward Field on the campus of the University of Oregon. Katam is set to race Thursday at 10:15 p.m. (ET) and can be seen on ESPN3.com or the Watch ESPN App.
Katam will be making his second appearance in the National Championships for outdoor track after placing ninth overall last season. He earned Second Team All-America honors last spring with a school-record time of 29:10.65 in Des Moines, Iowa. He is the third highest returning finisher from last year's race, trailing only Jared Ward of BYU (28:59.74) and Ryan Dohner of Texas (29:05.11).
Katam qualified this year's National Championship race winning the NCAA East Preliminary Round championship for the second straight year. He posted a time of 29:50.22 to record the top time among the two qualifying rounds, over four seconds faster than his nearest competitor in both regions.
Katam enters this year's National Championship race with the 16th best qualifying time in the country. He turned in a season-best time of 29:21.87 at the Stanford Invitational (March 29). Oklahoma State's Girma Mecheso of Ethiopia owns the top time this season in the 10,000-meter distance with a time of 27:52.38 at the Payton Jordan Invitational while Arizona's Lawi Lalang of Kenya turned in a time of 28:14.63 at the Pac-12 Conference Championships.