INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. --- The HCAC men's and women's cross country championships will take place Saturday, October 27 at Blue River Memorial Park in Shelbyville, Ind. The event will be hosted by Mount St. Joseph University with the women's race beginning at noon and the men's race at 1 p.m.
Rose-Hulman will look to claim its fourth men's conference championship in five years at the event, while the Manchester women will run for a third title in four years. Hanover and Earlham will look to challenge the Engineers on the men's side while Bluffton and Rose-Hulman will look to battle with Manchester on the women's side.
In this year's pre-championship poll Rose-Hulman was picked to win unanimously on the men's side with 10 first place votes and 100 points. Hanover College will strive for its first conference title, as the Panthers totaled 86 points. Earlham College placed third in the poll with 78 points, while Manchester University finished fourth with 72 points. Bluffton University finished fifth with 57 points and was followed by Franklin College (53 points), Anderson University (42), Transylvania University (30), Mount St. Joseph University (19), and Defiance College (13).
Rose-Hulman will strive to claim the top spot as conference champs this weekend after being voted to finish first in the preseason and pre-championship poll. The Fightin' Engineers have been paced by Matthew Stevenot (Hudson, Ohio) this season. Stevenot led Rose-Hulman all three times this fall with a season best time of 25:48.7.
Hanover's Jacob Hedrick (Memphis, Ind.) will look to lead the Panthers at the conference championship this weekend. The one-time Runner of the Week this season posted his best time at the Jenna Strong Classic placing 23rd with a time of 25:50.6.
On the women's side, Manchester was picked to win the women's conference championship in the pre-championship poll with 92 points and five first place votes. Bluffton University finished in second, collecting 87 points and four first place votes, while Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology placed third in the poll with 83 points. Earlham College finished fourth with 70 points and the final first place vote. The Quakers were followed by Hanover College (64 points), Franklin College (47), Anderson University (44), Transylvania University (27), Mount St. Joseph University (23), and Defiance College (13).
The Manchester women enter Saturday's championship as the favorite to claim the school's seventh women's cross country title. The Spartans have been led by junior Hannah Wappes (Columbia, Ind.) who has claimed Runner of the Week once this season and has a season best time of 22:54.7 at the Oberlin Inter-Regional Rumble.
The Bluffton women's cross country team will look to claim its first HCAC women's cross country championship on Saturday. The Beavers have been led this season by Alexis Cash (Gaines, Mich.), the junior marked her best 6-kilometer time this season 23:00.7 at the Oberlin Inter-Regional Rumble.
Below are the complete men's and women's cross country pre-championship polls along with the Runners to Watch list for this weekend's championship.
Runners to Watch
|Anderson||Jona Odell||Senior||Indianapolis, Ind.|
|Ian Leatherman||Junior||Indianapolis, Ind.|
|Clayton Wilson||Sophomore||Greencastle, Ind.|
|Tess Wise||Senior||Lynn, Ind.|
|Sarah Repp||Senior||Connersville, Ind.|
|Rachel Harrison||Senior||Indianapolis, Ind.|
|Bluffton||Dakota Frost||Junior||Edgerton, Ohio|
|Connor Gulick||Junior||St. Louisville, Ohio|
|Jonah Eckert||Senior||Terre Haute, Ind.|
|Alexis Cash||Junior||Gaines, Mich.|
|Jennie Matteson||Senior||Guysville, Ohio|
|Kimberly Hetrick||Sophomore||Fremont, Ohio|
|Defiance||Daren Gies||Senior||Plymouth, Ohio|
|Tyler Hines||Sophomore||Cincinnati, Ohio|
|Skyler JoHantgen||Freshman||West Unity, Ohio|
|Olivia Fett||Senior||Defiance, Ohio|
|Kenna Bell||Sophomore||Piqua, Ohio|
|Earlham||Nate Papachristos||Sophomore||North Plainfield, N.J.|
|Noah Scherf||Sophomore||Michigan City, Ind.|
|Bineyam Tumbo||Sophomore||Stone Mountain, Ga.|
|Ana Sosa-Ebert||Sophomore||Washington, D.C.|
|Ellie Haland||Sophomore||Afton, Minn.|
|Remy Haggerty||Freshman||Millburn, N.J.|
|Franklin||Clayton Brumfield||Junior||Greenfield, Ind.|
|Blaine Conners||Junior||Franklin, Ind.|
|Chris Graham||Sophomore||New Castle, Ind.|
|Krista Robinson||Sophomore||Greenwood, Ind.|
|Grace Esterline||Sophomore||Brownsburg, Ind.|
|Meghan Yencer||Senior||Poneto, Ind.|
|Hanover||Cooper Hanson||Freshman||Greenfield, Ind.|
|Jacob Hedrick||Senior||Memphis, Ind.|
|Hayden Veach||Junior||Shelbyville, Ind.|
|Arig Tong||Freshman||Columbus, Ind.|
|Ariel Barlow||Junior||Francesville, Ind|
|Amanda Stump||Senior||Garrett, Ind.|
|Manchester||Lucas Fontanez||Sophomore||Lowell, Ind.|
|Sam Barnard||Junior||Indianapolis, Ind.|
|Daniel Baker||Junior||Okemos, Mich.|
|Hannah Wappes||Junior||Columbia City, Ind.|
|Samina Qureshi||Senior||Columbia City, Ind.|
|Kelsey Tyler||Freshman||Rochester, Ind.|
|MSJ||Matthew Bruner||Sophomore||Dillsboro, Ind.|
|Luke Danis||Sophomore||Yellowsprings, Ohio|
|Trevor Levi||Freshman||Rising Sun, Ind.|
|Maria Waters||Senior||Cincinnati, Ohio|
|Rose-Hulman||Matthew Stevenot||Junior||Hudson, Ohio|
|Nolan Gross||Junior||Nashville, Tenn.|
|Nathan Ciriacks||Junior||Green Bay, Wis.|
|Mary Petersen||Junior||Zionsville, Ind.|
|Kally Morozin||Senior||Libertyville, Ill.|
|Kaia Johnson||Freshman||Brighton Mich.|
|Transylvania||Jacob Burnam||Freshman||Louisville, Ky.|
|Chauncey Longman||Freshman||Fredericksburg, Va.|
|Darrel Corn||Sophomore||Ludlow, Ky.|
|Rebecca Facktor||Senior||Louisville, Ky.|
|Cassidy Kelien||Freshman||Cincinnati, Ohio|
|Josie Cunningham||Sophomore||Lexington, Ky.|