GVSU XC teams still best in the Midwest
Laker teams secure 13th, 14th straight regional titles
The Grand Valley State cross country winning streak is still intact.
GVSU won both 2014 NCAA Division II Midwest championships Saturday in Evansville, Ind. The GVSU women ran away with their 14th consecutive regional crown, while the men took home their 13th straight title.
The men dominated the competition, totaling 43 points, more than halving the runner-up, Malone, which had 91 points. Before the race started, however, the Laker men had their eye on a different team.
“Going in, we thought Southern Indiana would be the one to maybe give us a run for our money, but Malone ended up being second,” said senior Alan Peterson.
Peterson was the first Laker to cross the finish line with a 10k time of 30:28:7, taking second place overall. Sophomore Chris May was the next Laker to finish, running to an eighth-place finish. Chad Cini wasn’t far behind, taking 10th.
The men’s team went into the race with a team-oriented outlook.
“Our strategy was to race as a pack for the majority of the race," Peterson said. "We were running controlled so we wanted to be together as much as we could."
GVSU coach Jerry Baltes had positive things to say about the men’s first-place finish.
“I was really impressed with all of our men," Baltes said. "Especially our top five, who ran great as a pack the entire race."
The Laker women, who have held the top place spot in the national polls the entire season, had similar results. The expectations were high, but GVSU lived up to them.
The Lakers scored 42 points to beat out Hillsdale, which scored 76 points to take second.
Jessica Janecke finished first for the Lakers and third overall with a 6k time of 20:55.0. Senior Allyson Winchester was the next Laker to cross the finish line, taking fourth place, while senior Hannah Osborn took sixth.
Redshirt sophomore Amy Creutz raced in place of Kendra Foley.
“I thought Creutz ran a very strong race from start to finish. She really stepped up as our fifth runner,” Baltes said.
Both GVSU teams will look to take home a national championship on Dec. 6 in Louisville, Ky.