The men and women's cross country teams competed in the NAIA Region VIII championships held at Indiana Wesleyan University on Saturday. The Forester men placed fourth in the 12-team field and the women finished ninth.
Aquinas ran away with the men's title out-distancing runner-up Cornerstone by 65 points and Spring Arbor won the women's event on a tie-breaker over Siena Heights. The two winners automatically advance to the NAIA National Championship on November 18 in Louisville, Kentucky.
In the men's 8K race, Aquinas won with a score of 36 followed by Cornerstone (101), Indiana Wesleyan (112), HU (121), Spring Arbor (121), Taylor (129), Marian (172), Siena Heights (177), Goshen (249), Bethel (291), Grace (300) and St. Francis (348).
Nick Johnson was the top finisher for the Foresters. His 11th place finish in 25:41 earned him NAIA All-Region honors. Joseph Njeri was 16th in 25:58, Dan Lindbloom was 20th in 26:08, Cody Hannie was 39th in 26:55, Luke Diehl was 43rd in 27:08, Luke Andrews was 57th in 27:33, Michael Lehman was 60th in 27:37, Dan Schaber was 112th in 30:33 and Josh Barnett came in 118th in 32:51.
In the women’s 5K race, Spring Arbor and Siena Heights tied with 68 points, but Spring Arbor's sixth runner finished ahead of Siena Heights' sixth runner, giving Spring Arbor the regional title. Aquinas was third with 73 points followed by Taylor (96), Goshen (111), Indiana Wesleyan (118), Cornerstone (169), Bethel (223), HU (232), Marian (280), St. Francis (324) and Grace (349).
For HU, Molly Andrews finished 29th in 19:47, Emily Holliday was 46th in 20:20, Ashley Buck placed 53rd in 20:33, Vanessa Macias was 63rd in 20:45, Jill Roughia finished 69th in 20:57 and Laura Bowman came in 105th in 22:20.