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Baksa making big impact with UT cross country team

Farragut High School graduate and former TSSAA state champion Andy Baksa helped lead the Tennessee Volunteersí cross country squad back to the NCAA championship and post its best finish at the meet since 1998.

Baksa proved to be one of the most dependable Vols, running in all seven races and scoring in six of them. In the lone race in which Baksa didnít score, the Tennessee Invitational, he placed sixth.

In three of the seasonís last four races, including the critically important NCAA South Regional Championship and NCAA championship, Baksa was the second Vol to cross the finish line.

His season-best finish of fifth came in the season opener, the 5K Chattanooga Invitational, with a time of 15:35. Baksa finished sixth at the 7.3K Tennessee Invitational after running a 24:23 on the home course at Lambert Acres in Maryville. The senior registered a 20th-place finish at the 8K Greater Louisville Classic (gold race) with a time of 25:13.37.

Baksa peaked in the postseason. He finished 21st, third among Vols, at the 8K SEC championship with a time of 24:00.15.

The former Admiral improved to capture all-region honors with an 18th-place ó second among Vols, 31:08.46 effort ó at the 10K NCAA South Regional Championship.

He closed his season at the 10K NCAA Championship, where he finished the course in 31:21.1 to take 139th, second among Vols.


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