ELSAH, Ill. (Nov. 19, 2016) – Our Lady of the Lake University (OLLU) men's cross-country finished in 36th place at the 61st annual NAIA Men's Cross Country National Championship. Southern Oregon claimed the top prize at the meet that took place at North Farm Cross Country Course.
Head Coach Stephen Sherman said, "It was a tough day to say the least. We had some adversity in the course and the weather but that's a cheap excuse. The reality is as a group we did not bring it and you cannot do that at a meet of this caliber."
|The men's team began the 8k this morning at 11:30 a.m.|
After Southern Oregon, who accumulated 122 points, St. Francis followed with 148 points. British Columbia (152), College of Idaho (218), The Master's (261), Northwestern (306), Oklahoma City (313), Cornerstone (315), Lewis-Clark (320) and Shawnee State (328 finished in the top 10. OLLU, with a total of 1,007 points, finished ahead of last place finisher Xavier University of Louisiana (1,228).
Winning the race was Jackson Thomas from Bacone, who had a 23:50.20 time in the 8k.
Sherman commented, "Luis and Pat T. definitely stepped up and had quality races."
Luis Ramirez (SO/San Antonio, Texas) was the top finisher for the Saints with a time of 26:57. Patrick Torres (JR/San Antonio, Texas) followed with a time of 26:58.20. Derek Barnett (JR/Redlands, Calif.)'s time was 27:55.20, followed by Patrick Bousselot (SO/Cibolo, Texas) at 27:57.20 and Nathaniel Aguilar (SO/El Paso, Texas) at 27:59.70. Tristen Robles (SO/Palmview, Texas)' time was 28:51.10, and Joe Pesina (FR/San Antonio, Texas) (pictured at left) finished at 29:22.40.
"It's always tough to end a season on a bad note and to get consumed by it, but overall it was still a solid season," Sherman said. "I am proud of our double RRAC championships and am appreciative for all this group sacrificed throughout the season. We'll take a down week and get back to it."
The Saints cross-country team will get set for track and field season that begins in the spring with the first meet scheduled for Feb. 15 at Trinity University.
Our Lady of the Lake University is celebrating its 10th anniversary in 2016-2017 as a member of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics. The University began competing in the NAIA in men's soccer and volleyball in 2007. A year later, they added women's soccer, golf and tennis. In 2009, the Saints began competing in cross-country, softball and basketball. In 2014, OLLU added two more sports — baseball and track and field. There are now 13 intercollegiate athletic teams at OLLU. All athletic alumni and up to two family members will receive free admission to basketball and volleyball games throughout the season. Baseball is not included in this special offer. All other home games are free and open to the public.