Men’s cross country team has best showing in team history, finishes second at NCAA Cross Country Championships

By Kyle Garcia | November 20, 2017 2:11pm

The men's team had their best finish in program history on Saturday.
by Picasa / The Beacon

The Portland Pilots men’s cross country team had a strong showing at the NCAA Cross Country Championships on Saturday, with the team finishing second in the nation.

It’s the best showing the men’s team has ever had, capitalizing on what has been a remarkable year for the Pilots.

“That’s really rewarding as a coach,” head coach Rob Conner said about his team’s performance in Louisville, KY. “To see your team put in that kind of work and get that kind of payoff.”

It’s the second time that men’s coach Rob Conner has guided the Pilots to the podium in his 28-year tenure as head coach. He also led them to a third-place finish in 2014, their previous highest finish. It is also Conner’s eighth top 10 finish as head coach.

Emmanuel Roudolff-Levisse finished 14th and earned All-American honors.
by Picasa / The Beacon

The highest individual finisher for the Pilots was sophomore Emmanuel Roudolff-Levisse, who finished 11th amongst all runners. Senior Jeff Theis and junior Nick Hauger also had notable performances, finishing 14th and 26th amongst all runners respectively.

“These guys have been working hard for six months on this one race,” Conner said about the dedication of the runners. “A lot of these guys are running 100 miles a week for a long time.”

“You don’t get a result like that if those people aren’t really working hard.”

The three runners also earned All-American honors for their performance, the first time that three runners have earned the honor in the same year for the Pilots. 

“That was kind of the unspoken goal,” Conner said about the All-Americans. “They ran hard the whole way...We’ve never had a 1-2-3 punch like that at the meet.”

The strong finish adds to the already impressive track record of the Pilots’ cross country team. They’ll look to add to their impressive resume when next season comes around.