Katelyn McCullough and Nathan Lane both earned top-12 finishes to highlight Grace’s cross country performance at the IWU Invitational on Friday.
McCullough’s eighth-place showing led the Lady Lancers to second overall as a team out of six squads, and Lane had the 12th-fastest time in the men’s race to pace Grace to third overall.
McCullough finished the race in 19:45.7. Sarah Hoff (20:46.9) and Megan Gast (20:47.4) were next for Grace, followed by Emma Mitchell (21:09.5). The trio of Creigh Ogle (21:22.7), Alexis Nelson (21:23.6) and McCallah Mast (21:25.0) rounded out the top seven.
“The ladies ran a nice race. We had some good packs and that showed with less than 40 seconds between our number two and seven runners,” said Grace head coach Jeff Raymond. “Katelyn stayed among the leaders for most of the race and had a solid finish.”
Lane had one of the fastest freshman times for the Lancers in recent memory, finishing in 26:39.5. He was the top freshman finisher in the race. Brandon Smith ran a personal-record time of 26:54.7 to place 16th. Freshman Tyler Houvener was 19th in 27:03.4.
Collin Chupp (27:58.6), Austin Yoder (28.26.2), Hunter Reed (28:31.4) and Tim Drew (29:16.5) wrapped up the top seven for Grace.
“The guys really ran a great race, even better than I expected for such a young squad. It’s a very fast course, but the times are still very competitive for this early in the year,” Raymond said. “Nathan’s time is easily the best freshman time at Grace in probably 10 years or more. He ran a fantastic last mile, passing several other guys. Brandon looked good, and Tyler also ran strong in his first 8K race. We have a lot of potential on this team.”
The cross country team will next gear up for the Indiana Intercollegiates on Sept. 19 from West Lafayette, Ind.