The Northwestern cross-country teams put up strong performances Saturday, Oct. 12 at the Dordt Invitational in near-freezing temperatures amid gusts of cold wind and occasional snow flurries. Both teams saw numerous personal records (denoted with asterisks) set in the competitive event.
In the men’s 8K race, junior Dylan Hendricks led the team, finishing fourth in a time of 25:30*. Sophomore Peyton Brasser finished second for the Raiders, placing 26th with a time of 26:38*. Junior Joshua Starr, back from injury, placed 29th with a 26:40*. Sophomore Levi Cross was the fourth Raider to cross the line, placing 34th with a time of 27:05*. Senior Ben Aberson finished 41st with a time of 27:27*.
Outside the top five, Ian Wiersma, Joseph Kunert, Alex Nonhof, Garrison Hazen, Colton Folkers, Derek Janzen and Micah Wittenberg all set personal records on the Dordt course.
The men’s team finished fourth overall with 108 points, being beat out by Doane (first – 43pts), Dordt (second – 50pts, and Dakota State (third – 83pts). Morningside placed fifth with 112 points, and Midland took sixth with 142.
In the women’s 5K race, the first six Raiders across the line finished in an impressively narrow 5-second window.
Seniors Breanna Harthoorn and Kelsey Lang led the pack, finishing in 13th and 14th place, respectively, with the time of 19:36*, a personal best for Lang. Not far behind, sophomore Autumn Muilenberg finished 15th with a time of 19:38. Junior Hunter Koepke was the fourth Raider to cross the finish line, placing 17th with a time of 19:40. Junior Anna Teigland and freshman Anessa Schoo also finished with personal best times of 19:40*, placing 18th and 19th. Samantha Dowling, Angela Brinkman and Morgan Van Der Brink all saw personal records set at the meet.
“I was proud of our Red Raiders for competing and grinding out some impressive performances,” Head Coach Scott Bahrke said. “Our ladies raced well, but we know there is still work to be done to beat Dordt at the conference championship.”
The women’s team finished second overall with 52 points, losing only to Dordt (first – 17pts).
“The women had their best performance of the year and recognize that they still have room to improve,” Assistant Coach Carrie Krohn said. “With work, I think we can make a run at nationals. I was pleased with how some men stepped up today. The men have battled many injuries this season, and the team is learning how to step into scoring positions.”
The Raider cross-country team will return to the Dordt course on Nov. 9 for the conference championship.