LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Seven teams and three individuals represented the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) at the 2014 NCAA Division II Cross Country National Championship meet on Saturday, December 6 in Louisville, Ky.
On the women's side, Grand Valley State captured its third straight National Championship with 50 points and was led by sophomore Kendra Foley, who is just the second Laker to ever win an individual National Championship. Foley crossed the finish line with a time of 21:05.8.
Senior Allyson Winchester from Grand Valley State came in second with a time of 21:11.5 followed by teammate junior Jessica Janecke in third with a time of 21:14.7.
Hillsdale women's team was runner-up, the best ever team finish in the NCAA in school history with 115 total points. Junior Kristina Galat paced the Chargers with a seventh place finish with a time of 21:26.1. Junior Emily Oren cracked the top-20 with a 12th place finish and a time of 21:34.0.
Wayne State's women's team finished in sixth with 219 points and was paced by senior Lauren Gagnon with a time of 21:57.8.
Malone, who was just outside the top-10, finished 11th with 350 points, was led by junior Sarah Meek with a time of 22:10.3.
Senior Emily Short from Saginaw Valley finished her senior year with a time of 22:43.7 and placed 85th.
All three men's teams placed in the top-10 with Grand Valley State coming in second with 127 total points. Malone earned 259 points and a ninth place finish while Ashland was 10th with 274 points.
Five runners placed in the top-20 in a field of 245 with GVSU's Alan Peterson finishing his junior campaign with a ninth place finish and a time of 30:42.4. Malone's senior Andrew Trusty ended his career with a time of 30:55.7 to come in 10th and Malone's junior Ryan Roush was 16th with a time of 31:06.4. Ashland's junior Nick Hall came in at 19th with a time of 31:11.2.
Competing as individuals, Hillsdale's senior Joshua Mirth was 12th after finishing with a time of 30:59.2 while Michigan Tech's sophomore Sean Pengelly ran 31:47.4 to place 57th.
Grand Valley State Claims Third Straight National Title
Courtesy of Nick Kapatos, Grand Valley State Sports Information
LOUISVILLE, Ky. – For the third straight year, and the fourth time in five seasons, the Grand Valley State women's cross country team found themselves on the podium receiving the championship trophy as Division II national champions at the EP Tom Sawyer State Park in Louisville on Saturday afternoon.
The Lakers dominated the field, placing six runners in the Top 40, including the first three runners in the event, to take 50 points. The next closest team was Hillsdale, who scored 115 points to place second.
"It's tough to win one championship, let alone three in a row," said Laker head coach Jerry Baltes. "Our women really executed our race plan very well today by getting out front and establishing position. It's a huge credit to our entire program and the mindset that they have taken day in and day out over the course of the seasons."
In addition to the team title, sophomore Kendra Foley became the second Laker ever to win the individual title. Foley, named the 2014 GLIAC Women's Runner of the Year after a first-place finish at the 2014 GLIAC Championships, earned her first place finish with a time of 21:05.8.
Not to be alone, Foley was joined by Allyson Winchester and Jessica Janecke in the top three of the race. Winchester placed second with a time of 21:11.5, while Janecke finished with a time of 21:14.7 to place third.
"What can I say about the front three? Simply outstanding," Baltes continued. "We felt as the season progressed that all three could make a run at the individual title."
In her final race as a Laker, senior Hannah Osborn earned All-America honors by placing 22ndwith a time of 21:49.7. Joining her in the Top 40 were Jordan Chester (21:59.2) in 34th and Amy Creutz (22:03.1) in 37th, while Kelly Haubert placed 53rd with a time of 22:20.2.