2013 Cross Country
Men place 10th at Calvin Regional Preview
Sept. 14, 2013
GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. - In nearly perfect cross country conditions, the Bluffton University men's and women's teams executed superbly on the well-groomed, permanently marked Calvin College cross country course in the pre-regional invitational on Saturday, Sept. 14, 2013. This was an opportunity for teams from throughout the NCAA Great Lakes Region to race on the course to which they will return in mid-November when they will vie for a berth to the national championship meet.
Freshman Josh Edens (Westerville/Central) once again led the team, in his first 8k effort, with a new school-record time of 25:56. His performance placed him 35th in a field of 336 finishers. Edens' outstanding effort contributed to the men's 10th place finish among a field of 27 strong teams, only one position behind Depauw University who was ranked 9th in the region going into the meet. The Beavers also placed well ahead of Muskingum University which was ranked 10th in the region. Among HCAC runners in attendance, Edens was fifth across the line while the men's team placed behind Manchester but ahead of neighboring Defiance. Completing the Beavers' top trio of runners was sophomore Zachary Smith (West Unity/Hilltop) in a new PR time of 27:02 with Jack Fisher (Norwalk/St. Paul), in the midst of an outstanding freshman campaign, running 27:12.
Continuing her stellar freshman season, Anna Hairston (Mansfield/Ontario) again led the women's team with a 73rd place finish out of 316 runners. She eclipsed the school record she set last week, setting the new mark at 19:36. Hairston was the third HCAC individual finisher. Setting a new PR of 20:24, fellow freshman Raven Wilson (Coshocton/Riverview) finished second for the Beavers with sophomore Tara Murphy (Westerville/Thomas Worthington) continuing her return to form, shaving 11 seconds from last week's time.
"I am extremely excited about how our young men's team ran today in a highly competitive field," said Head Coach Karen Brandt. "For two of our freshmen men to place in the top three of our team, in their first collegiate 8k race, was phenomenal. I'm impressed all around with our freshmen men and women for the poise and maturity they showed in the face of this large and competitive field. When we return to Calvin for the NCAA regional meet, I expect to see even better results as we build on today's accomplishments."
The men's and women's harriers will compete next Saturday, Sept. 21 at Otterbein University. The men's 8k race will start at 10:45 a.m. followed by the women's 6k event at 11:30 a.m.