Grace Story Podcast – Ep. #71: Jacob Poyner, Heather Plastow, and Bryan Hernandez
Listen as Dr. Drew Flamm interviews Grace Cross Country Coach Jacob Poyner and Lancer athletes Bryan Hernandez and Heather Plastow. The men’s and women’s teams recently repeated as NCCAA National Champions. The cross country program has improved from 8th and 10th in the league to 8th and 10th in the nation over the past several years. Meet the runners and coach helping make it happen on the #GraceStoryPodcast.
Coach Poyner Bio:
Local running standout Jake Poyner is set for his fourth year coaching Grace’s cross country programs. He also serves as the distance coach during the track and field season.
Poyner, who served as a graduate assistant coach for Grace’s cross country and track and field teams in 2018, moved into the head coaching role for cross country in 2019. During just his first few years as Grace’s coach, he has helped bring four national championships to the department including two for cross country and two for track and field.
Heather Plastow Bio:
Earned All-Crossroads League honors in 2020 and 2021 … finished 58th at both the 2020 and 2021 NAIA National Championships .. ran a PR of 18:19 at the NCCAA national championships to place third, earning NCCAA All-American honors … ran 18:47 at the 2020 IWU Twilight Meet … holds multiple school records in track … NAIA Indoor All-American in the mile.
Bryan Hernandez Bio:
Picked up NAIA All-American recognition at the 2021 NAIA race, placing 16th with a time of 25:34 … earned All-Crossroads League honors in 2020 and 2021 ..was the individual national champion at the 2021 NCCAA National Championships, leading the men to their first team title in team history as well … produced season-best time of 24:30 at the 2021 NAIA Great Lakes Challenge … placed 45th at 2020 NAIA Championships out of over 300 runners in personal best time of 25:37 … twice named Crossroads League XC Runner of the Week during the 2020 season … NAIA Indoor All-American in the 3000 meters in track in 2021 … holds school records in the indoor 3,000 and 5,000 as well as the outdoor 5,000 and 10,000.