After back-to-back second place finishes, Men’s Cross Country takes 2011 OAC Championship title
By: Monique Bowman
LIMA — The Ohio Northern men's cross country team earned the 2011 Ohio Athletic Conference championship title, held at the Lost Creek Golfers Club in Lima on Saturday, after finishing in the top spot with 43 points.
The title is the program's first title since 2008, followed by second place finish the past two seasons.
"You could tell that the men were very hungry and determined from the beginning. We came so close the past few years so it was time," head coach Jason Maus said.
"We got established early and set the tone for the race. John Carroll and Mount Union both battled really well but we handled it. The men ran really well today, probably one of our best races this season."
Last season's champs Mount Union came in second with 75 points, followed by John Carroll with 89 points. Heidelberg (103) and Marietta (138) rounded out the top five team finishes.
Northern's first racer to cross the finish line was freshman Nathan Rosenbaum, finishing fourth overall and marking a season-best time in 26:04.5. Junior Michael Simmons finished sixth overall and also marked a season-best time in 26:07.5, followed by an eighth-place finish by senior Dan Smith in 26:08.4.
Taking the individual title this year was Marietta junior Caleb Muller, finishing first in 25:27.7.
The Polar Bears now turn their attention to NCAA Regionals, hosted by Oberlin on Saturday, Nov. 12 at the Oberlin College Woodchip Trail. The race is set to begin at noon.
Maus commented that "the regional race for the men are going to be tough but we've got a great pack time right now. So we have to keep that momentum going and step it up."
1. Ohio Northern, 43; 2. Mount Union, 75; 3. John Carroll, 89; 4. Heidelberg, 103; 5. Marietta, 138; 6. Baldwin-Wallace, 161; 7. Wilmington, 168; 8. Muskingum, 187; 9. Otterbein, 249; 10. Capital, 279
Top 5 Finishers
1. Caleb Mueller (MAR), 25:27.7; 2. Kenneth Janosko (BWC), 25:44.8; 3. Pat Carroll (WIL), 26:02.6; 4. Nathan Rosenbaum (ONU), 26:04.5; 5. Josh Clemence (Mount), 26:05.8
Top 7 ONU Finishers
4. Nathan Rosenbaum (26:04.5); 6. Michael Simmons (26:07.5); 8. Dan Smith (26:08.4); 12. Ben Ankrom (26:13.9); 13. Mark Berton (26:14.9), 18. Evan McKee (26:18.4), 20. Kenton Holliday (26:49.7)