Mon, Sep. 26, 2011 - [Cross Country and Track Men]
Central, SC --- There's one word that can describe the outcome of Saturday's cross country meet for the Emmanuel College Lions – Victorious! The men's cross country team finished 1st of 7 at the NCCAA South Region Invitational/Warrior Championship on Saturday, September 24th.The meet was held in Central, South Carolina on the campus of Southern Wesleyan University.
Picking up his first collegiate victory was freshman Rashaun Tanner who clocked a 28:13.00. Following Tanner was freshman Leonel Ayala who respectfully clocked a 28:21.00. "I felt like I ran pretty well although I didn't attack the start of the race as hard. I'm very proud of how strong our team performed and stuck together," shared Tanner.
Coach Larios was quick to add that this was a very tough 8K course, and the times were not indicative of their tremendous efforts. The Lions won in dominating fashion by placing six runners in the top 10.
"Leonel Ayala finally showed the guys what he is capable of and I think he still has more to go. However, I don't think we would have done as well today as a team had it not been for Joshua Wheeler, Carson Massey and Jonah Holbert. They really worked hard to keep our top five gap under 60 seconds. I was also proud of Rashaun's first collegiate victory. He's a tough competitor and I'm excited to see him race at SSAC's," stated Coach Jose Larios.
Rounding out the next five scorers for Emmanuel in the 8K race were freshmen Ethan Alexander (29:06.00), Jonah Holbert (29:07.00), Carson Massey (29:11.00), Joshua Wheeler (29:15.00), and Christopher Bailey (30:11.00).
The Lady Lions were able to capture 3rd place of 6 teams. Leading the Lady Lions was sophomore Kimberly Hibbitt who clocked a 21:57.00 in the 5k race. "Our main objective this weekend was to compete with our SSAC runners rather than focusing on time. The course was really hard, but I'm proud of the way we challenged ourselves in the race," shared Hibbitt.
Following Hibbitt was junior Andrea Langley who respectfully clocked a 22:35.00. The next four scorers for the Lady Lions were freshman Emily Henry (23:42.00), senior Becki Moore (23:52.00), freshman Lindsey Taylor (24:01.00) and Anna Greenway (24:40.00).
"Individually, it was really nice to see Kimberly Hibbitt race as well as she did. She's gaining more and more confidence with each race. Becki Moore showed a lot of improvement in her fight too," shared Larios.
Overall, both the men and women were able to prove that their work ethic and exceptional attitudes have definitely paid off for a victorious weekend. "I was really pleased overall. Most importantly, I saw a men's and women's team get to celebrate together in a unified celebration for our men's victory. One of the best components of a competition is seeing our women cheer for our men and vice versa. It builds such a team chemistry and I love seeing it. It was really special to see the guys win in such a dominating fashion on such a difficult 8K course," stated Larios.
Both the men and women will travel to Louisville, Kentucky to compete in the Greater Louisville Classic on Saturday, October 1st.
Written by: Samantha Finello