NCCAA DII Cross Country Championships Preview

NCCAA DII Cross Country Championships Preview

JACKSON, Miss. -- The Sabercats will be fielding two teams at the NCCAA DII National Meet tomorrow. The squads will have their eyes fixed on a standout performance at the season finale.

Men's Preview

The Men's Squad will be fielding the maximum 7 runners in the event. MBU had 10 runners qualify for Nationals this season.

A breakdown of the Sabercats' top 7 times of the season is listed below:

Runner Name   Season Best  Meet  NCCAA Rank 
Jeremiah Doak     28:38     2017 Wisconsin Private College Championships     8
Cameron Rankin 28:40 2017 Wisconsin Private College Championships 9
Robert Kile 29:49 2017 Warrior Invitational 12
Kurt Wagner 30:10 2017 Wisconsin Private College Championships 13
Josh Kruit 30:46 2017 Wisconsin Private College Championships 17
David Williams 30:47 2017 Wisconsin Private College Championships 18
Colton Lingle 32:36 2017 Wisconsin Private College Championships 28

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To qualify as individuals, the male runners must run an 8K race in 34:00 or better. To qualify as a team, the group must run a combined time of 3 hours flat (for their top 5 runners).

The Sabercats' best time as a team came when they hosted the 2017 Wisconsin Private College Championships on Oct. 14. MBU clocked in with a combined team time of 2:29:02 that day - 31 minutes clear of the team qualifying time. 

During the regular season, Maranatha posted the second-best team time in the NCCAA DII. The men's squad from Bob Jones University clocked in at 2:18:16 at their own event on Oct. 28.

Women's Preview

The Sabercats Women's Team will field a full team of 6 runners as well.

Only the Sabercats' top 3 runners met the individual qualifying time of 24:30 for a 5K, but according to NCCAA policy, if 3 runners meet the mark, the institution can field a full team.

On Sep. 30, MBU did meet the team-time standard of 2:05:00. That day, the Sabercats registered at 2:03:26 at the Warrior Invitational in Milwaukee.

A breakdown of the 6 runners is below:

Runner Name      Season Best      Meet       NCCAA Rank  
Sarah Vander Pluym    22:28  2017 Warrior Invitational  16
Madelyn Hansel 22:42  2017 Warrior Invitational  18
Anna Heins 23:27  2017 Warrior Invitational  21
Lauryn Wigdal 25:48  2017 Warrior Invitational  39
Katheryn Marten 28:25   2017 Wisconsin Private College Championships   47
Haly Hendricks 28:56 2017 Warrior Invitational 50

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That team time of 2:03:26 came in at 5th-best in the regular season. 

Teams ranked 3rd through 7th are separated by just 6 minutes on the women's side, so it will be a tough battle for those coveted top-5 slots.

Defending champions Moody Bible (1:42:09) and defending runners-up Bob Jones University (1:45:42) are on track to battle it out for the national title.

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The event will be held at the high-profile Choctaw Trails in Jackson, Miss.

For more information regarding the event, click here.

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