Both men’s and women’s cross country had strong finishes Friday at the NCAA West Regional, with the men’s team claiming their second straight team and individual title, and the women’s team finishing fifth as a team with two top ten finishers.
Redshirt senior Nick Hauger led the way once again for the men, finishing in first place in the 10k with a time of 29:42.4. Other notable finishes include redshirt senior Logan Orndorff at 13th, and seniors Michael Sommers and Noah Schutte at 20th and 21st respectively. Their strong performances earned them All-West Regional honors.
“It’s been a lot of work this past summer and throughout the season as a whole,” Hauger said. “It’s really been an intention to continue to run with all the support throughout, not just this team, but Portland as a whole.”
The first place finish for the men’s team means an automatic bid to the NCAA championships on Nov. 17 in Madison, Wisconsin. It’s 19th time in program history Portland has made it to the championships.
“I don’t think it’ll be too hard after a performance like today to keep that momentum,” Hauger said. “I know that everyone’s excited, everyone at home is excited for us, and it’s hard to let that fizzle out so I think that it takes care of itself.”
Redshirt seniors Lauren LaRocco (19:38.3) and Taryn Rawlings (19:48.2) led the way for the Pilots in the 6k, finishing eighth and 10th respectively. Redshirt junior Aoibhe Richardson (20:10.9) crossed the finish line 19th to round out the runners who earned All-West Regional honors for the Pilots.
“I feel great about how the team did,” women’s head coach Ian Solof said. “They did an excellent job and that was exactly what we were hoping for.”
They’re performance this season and at regionals helped them earn an at-large bid for the NCAA Championships. They will also go to Madison, Wisconsin on Nov. 17 for nationals.
Kyle Garcia is the sports editor for The Beacon. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.