‘It’s part of the Utah pride’: Herriman High School boys cross-country team wins national title

Dec 3, 2023, 4:14 PM | Updated: Dec 4, 2023, 2:18 pm

HERRIMAN — A Utah high school team is making history in the sports world. Herriman High School’s boys cross-country team won the Nike Cross Nationals in Portland on Saturday.

The team of seven runners is the first in the state and the southwest region to place first in the competition.

“In 2022, we weren’t even ranked going into that season and this whole group was a part of that season,” said assistant coach Josh Pugel. “To go through all that and be the number one team in the country is a massive accomplishment.”

Pugel said the boys completed the 5K race at just over a five-minute pace per mile.

“For other teams, they have good hitters, they might have good catchers, good pitchers, it’s not going to win them the game, but in cross-country, you’ve got seven guys and, on the day, at least five of them have to have a great race in order for them to win any meet,” he said.

The team flew back to Salt Lake City Sunday afternoon. To welcome home the national champions, Herriman police and the Unified Fire Authority escorted them through town to the high school.

A Utah high school team is making history in the sports world. Herriman High School’s boys cross country team won the Nike Cross Nationals in Portland Saturday. The team was welcomed home Sunday with a hero’s welcome. (KSL TV)

“Hero’s welcome,” said parent Lenny Ogomo. “They wanted this and put in the work, we’re here to reward them.”

He and dozens of others brought signs and cheered along with the school’s marching band as the teammates drove in.

Herriman cross-country now on the map

“I think we have the right coach, we have the right talent, “Ogomo said. “Herriman is on the map now and it’s going to be on the map for a while.”

Runner Hyrum Wood said he didn’t expect a crowd that large.

“Cross-country’s not like a wide, well-known sport but it was good to have people here,” he said.

The senior said he and his teammates were inspired by last year’s seniors. They said they pushed themselves to win this title.

“You see a lot of people who may not be good sportsmen, who may kind of goof off all the time during meets, but our kids are really focused, they really care about each other,” Pugel said.

Wood said they also let their friendly competition with American Fork High School fuel their performance. American Fork finished second in the championship meet, while Riverton placed ninth.

Wood said he believes distance runners in Utah are getting the attention they deserve.

“We’re really good,” Wood said. “It’s part of the Utah pride and distance culture is now revolved around Utah.”

KSL 5 TV Live


Follow @kslsports...

KSL Sports

What I’m Looking For During BYU Football Spring Practice

BYU football kicks off spring practice. Our Insider Mitch Harper shares what will catch his attention at practice.

7 minutes ago

Follow @kslsports...

KSL Sports

Kalani Sitake Sees Big 12 Experience Helping BYU Football In 2024

BYU football coach Kalani Sitake sees the Big 12 experience being valuable for his program entering year two in the league.

2 hours ago

Follow @kslsports...

KSL Sports

Bovine Blog: Previewing Air Force Falcons At No. 22 Utah State Aggies

The No. 22 Aggies look to complete the season-series sweep of Air Force on Friday, March 1, at the Spectrum. Tip-off is at 9 p.m. MT.

8 hours ago

Follow @kslsports...

KSL Sports

Bovine Blog: ‘Confident’ Darius Brown II Sets Tone For No. 22 Utah State

When its back is against a wall, No. 22 Utah State leans on Darius Brown II to put his team in a position to win games.

10 hours ago

Follow @kslsports...

KSL Sports

Utah Men’s Basketball Looking Forward To A Special Weekend

Just like the Utah women, the Runnin' Utes will be celebrating Senior Night this weekend and saying "good-bye" to some very special athletes.

10 hours ago

Follow @kslsports...

KSL Sports

Jazz Mailbag 2.0: Can You Have Too Many Young Players?

Welcome to the Utah Jazz mailbag where every week our NBA insiders answer your questions on social media about your favorite team.

10 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

Modern chandelier hanging from a white slanted ceiling with windows in the backgruond...

Lighting Design

Light Up Your Home With These Top Lighting Trends for 2024

Check out the latest lighting design trends for 2024 and tips on how you can incorporate them into your home.

Technician woman fixing hardware of desktop computer. Close up....

PC Laptops

Tips for Hassle-Free Computer Repairs

Experiencing a glitch in your computer can be frustrating, but with these tips you can have your computer repaired without the stress.

Close up of finger on keyboard button with number 11 logo...

PC Laptops

7 Reasons Why You Should Upgrade Your Laptop to Windows 11

Explore the benefits of upgrading to Windows 11 for a smoother, more secure, and feature-packed computing experience.

Stylish room interior with beautiful Christmas tree and decorative fireplace...

Lighting Design

Create a Festive Home with Our Easy-to-Follow Holiday Prep Guide

Get ready for festive celebrations! Discover expert tips to prepare your home for the holidays, creating a warm and welcoming atmosphere for unforgettable moments.

Battery low message on mobile device screen. Internet and technology concept...

PC Laptops

9 Tips to Get More Power Out of Your Laptop Battery

Get more power out of your laptop battery and help it last longer by implementing some of these tips from our guide.

Users display warnings about the use of artificial intelligence (AI), access to malicious software ...

Les Olson

How to Stay Safe from Cybersecurity Threats

Read our tips for reading for how to respond to rising cybersecurity threats in 2023 and beyond to keep yourself and your company safe.

‘It’s part of the Utah pride’: Herriman High School boys cross-country team wins national title