Photo by Nathan Addis/HutchCC Sports Information: HutchCC’s Andrew Kibet runs at the indoor track meet at the NJCAA Track and Field Championships at Liberty University
By Adam Kolb / Co-Sports Editor
Sophomore distance runner Andrew Kibet finished on a high note in his first and only indoor track season at Hutchinson Community College.
After a regular season and regional championship with five school records broken, Kibet saved his best for last, winning a pair of national titles at the NJCAA Indoor Track and Field Championships at Liberty University in Lynchburg, Virginia.
Kibet claimed his second and third national championships as a Blue Dragon – he was the 2018 national cross country individual champion as well. He is now a six-time NJCAA All-American, combining cross country, indoor track and outdoor track.
“This has been so good,” Kibet said about winning his most recent national titles. “I was so happy about it.”
Kibet first completed the mile, where he won the title with an NJCAA national meet record of 4 minutes, 4.51 seconds. The old record was set by Dodge City’s Eluid Njubi in 2000.
Kibet broke that mark by 0.35 seconds and beat his own Blue Dragon record by 4.29 seconds as well. He would go on to win a national championship in the 1,000 meters, finishing with a time of 2:25.9.
Kibet was dominant at the indoor championships, scoring 20 of Hutchinson’s 23 points, as the team finished 12th overall in the standings.
While there are still more meets to come in the next month, Kibet is looking forward to potentially competing in the NJCAA Championship in front of a home crowd in two months at Gowans Stadium.
“I’m going to train so hard. I don’t want to be embarrassed,” Kibet said with a laugh.
In the meantime, Kibet and the rest of the team will have their sights set on the outdoor season, which begins on March 21 at the Emporia State Spring Twilight.