Written by Sports Information Student Assistant, Jake Sipes-Salter
HANOVER, Ind. – The Hanover men's cross country team will look to continue its season as the Panthers travel to North Manchester, Ind. to compete in the HCAC Championships Saturday, October 28.
The conference meet has not been hosted by Manchester since the 2008 season, where the Panthers finished fifth with a score of 168 points.
In their most recent race at the #JennaStrong Fall Classic, the Panthers finished eighth out of 30 teams and fourth among NCAA Division III schools. Junior Jacob Hedrick (Memphis, Ind.) recorded a fifth-place overall finish with a time of 26:10.6 while senior Joe Rector (Aurora, Ind.) followed less than a second behind at 26:11.1 in sixth.
Sophomore Hayden Veach (Shelbyville, Ind.) posted a time of 26:28.7, placing him 16th overall, giving Hanover a trio of top-20 finishers.
The Panthers will look to ride this momentum into the conference championship and take home the victory, which they have not done since 1977, predating the HCAC.
Hanover finished third in the conference each of the past two seasons. The team's final place in the standings was correctly predicted by the HCAC preseason poll in both seasons and five out of the last seven. This year, the Panthers garnered a third place prediction by the HCAC coaches for the third consecutive year.
Rose-Hulman was picked to finish first in the preseason poll this year followed by the host school, Manchester, in second. The two schools tied for first in last year's meet, with Manchester winning the tiebreaker.
At last year's HCAC championship meet in Hanover, the Blue and Red came in third. Hedrick led the way with a time of 26:24.37 qualifying him for third overall. Veach was the next to cross for Hanover with a time of 27:28.46, good for tenth.
The overall champion, Manchester's Conner Bresnahan, finished with a time of 26:10.18. However, he graduated last year, which opens the door for a new conference champion this fall.
The 8K race is scheduled to start at 11 a.m. on the Manchester cross country course.
Contact: Tyler Jester