The Wolverine

August 2018

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

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CHAMPIONSHIP KICK Fifth-year senior Ben Flanagan entered the 10,000 meters at the NCAA Outdoor Championships seeded 23rd in a 24-man field. The ultra- competitive race featured eight of the top 11 finishers from the fall's NCAA Cross Country Championships, which is also 10,000 meters and an event where Flanagan placed 20th for his first All-America honor in the fall sport. However, an incredible closing kick gave Flanagan — who did not even qualify for the NCAA Championships in the race last year while battling a foot injury and sacral stress fracture in his back — a new personal best time (28:34.53) and the win when it mattered the most. The native of Kitchener, Ontario, and seven-time team captain was as far back as 14th approaching the two-mile mark, but outkicked Vincent Kiprop of Alabama in the final 100 meters to finish 0.46 seconds ahead of the pre-race favorite and shatter his previous personal record by 39 seconds. The methodical Flanagan didn't even pull even with Kiprop until the final 20 meters, but won out in a dramatic fight to the finish in front of 9,767 thunderously loud fans to give the Wolverines its first 10,000-me- ter title since 1989 and Flanagan's college career a storybook ending. PHOTO COURTESY MICHIGAN PHOTOGRAPHY

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