Dordt College News

GPAC Cross Country Championships Saturday

October 30, 2012

Meet Time…The GPAC Championships will be run on Saturday, November 3 at the Adams Nature Preserve at McCook Lake, South Dakota, hosted by Briar Cliff.  The women’s race gets underway at 10:45 with the men to follow at about 11:30.

Participants… All 11 schools in the Great Plains Athletic Conference will have runners at the competition.

Last Year… The Dordt College Defender women's cross country team placed fourth at the Great Plains Athletic Conference Championship Meet on Saturday, November 5 at Pioneers Park in Lincoln, Nebraska. The Defenders qualified two runners to advance to the NAIA National Meet in two weeks while the rest of the team will have to wait for a potential at-large berth based on the rankings released early next week.

Dordt totaled 95 points which was good for fourth place, missing out on third by nine points and second by 11 points on a day where the second place team advanced to the Nationals because Nebraska Wesleyan, an NCAA Division III team won the event.

Dordt's first two runners were Renee Buikema and Michelle Steiger with times of 19:04 and 19:06 for seventh and ninth place respectively. Both will run at the national meet as the top-five runners on teams that don't advance to Nationals earn individual berths. Abby De Vries ran 17th in a time of 19:40 while Merissa Harkema was 25th in 19:57. Katie Bonnema was Dordt's final counter for points with a 20:24 for 38th place overall. Hannah Orlow and Lauren Opp were 48th and 49th respectively and pushed other point winners down with times of 20:46 and 20:49.

Hannah Klingberg won the event with a time of 18:23 on the 5,000 meter course. The field consisted of 89 runners from all 11 GPAC schools.

Team Standings

Nebraska Wesleyan 28
Concordia 84
Morningside 86
Dordt 95
Northwestern 107
Doane 127
Hastings 206
Mount Marty 241
Midland 245
Briar Cliff 301
Dakota Wesleyan 334

The Dordt College men's cross country team is going back to the NAIA National Championship Meet after nearly a 30 year absence after a second place finish at the Great Plains Athletic Conference Championship meet on Saturday, November 5 in Lincoln, Nebraska at Pioneers Park.

The Defenders beat Concordia by 11 points for second place behind NCAA Division III member Nebraska Wesleyan to take the automatic berth to the National Meet in Vancouver, Washington.
Dordt's top finisher was Ryan Tholen with a ninth place time of 26:44 and his teammates weren't far behind. Nathan Jackson was 12th in 26:50 with Tim Bierma and Jeremy Van Woerden finishing right next to each other in 19th and 20th place with times of 27:10 and 27:11. Dordt's fifth runner was Eric Tudor who clocked a 27:24 for 26th place. Steve Olson and Trent Kischer were the final Dordt runners to factor into scoring, pushing other places down with a 32nd and 33rd finish respectively in 27:46 and 27:52.Dordt's first and fifth runners were separated by just 40 seconds.

Edwin Ronoh of Doane won the meet in a time of 26:12 on the 8,000 meter course. 93 runners ran in the 11 team field. Nebraska Wesleyan's finishes are removed for NAIA scoring and individual qualifications.

Team Standings:
Nebraska Wesleyan 24
Dordt 80
Concordia 91
Morningside 96
Doane 106
Mount Marty 148
Hastings 197
Northwestern 235
Midland 276
Briar Cliff 279

Last Time… A shorthanded Dordt College women's cross country team used its depth to take the title at the Mount Marty Cross Country Invite on Saturday, October 20 in Yankton, South Dakota.

The Defenders totaled 49 points to beat second place Colorado College with 61 points in the 12 team field.

Dordt was paced by Lauren Opp's fourth place time of 18:31 and Renee Buikema was ninth in 19:08. Kayla Byl and Abby De Vries were next across for the Defenders in 11th and 12th at 19:13 and Katie Bonnema closed the Dordt scoring with a 17th place time of 19:25. Whitney Wilgenburg and Kathryn Smit were Dordt's pushers at 37th and 49th with times of 20:08 and 20:26.

Places are overall marks and not the scoring places.

Dordt was 10th in this past week's NAIA National Coaches' Poll.

Sarah Kortze, competing unattached, ran the 5,000 meter course in 17:53 for the best time in the 141 runner field.

Ryan Tholen led the Dordt College men's cross country effort with a fifth place finish at the Mount Marty Invite. Tholen's 25:53 helped Dordt to a fourth place finish behind two other GPAC schools and Dickinson State.

Chris Postma, Ryan McNamara and Nathan Jackson came across the line in 29th 30th and 31st with Postma clocking a 26:51, less than three seconds faster than his teammates. Tim Bierma was 44th in 27:16 while Nathan Reichert was sixth across the line for Dordt in a 46th place time of 27:18. Steve Olson was the final runner for Dordt to figure into the scoring with a time of 27:42 for 64th place.

Places listed are overall and not for points.

162 runners competed on the 8,000 meter course with Matt Fideler winning the race unattached in 25:25.

Dickinson State finished with a low total of 37 while Concordia and Morningside were next with 60 and 64. Dordt totaled 119 points in the final tuneup for the GPAC Championships.

Poll…The Dordt College women are no. 11 in the NAIA poll released last week while the Defender men are receiving votes.

Next…The top-NAIA finishing team at the GPAC Championships earns an automatic berth at the NAIA National Championships on November 17 in Vancouver, Washington.

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