Men's Cross Country

 

LC Men’s Cross Country Picked Second in ODAC Poll

 

For immediate release – 8/23/2013 - #016
LC Men's Cross Country Picked Second in ODAC Poll

FOREST, VA -- Bridgewater College received eight first place votes and 98 total points en route to leading the rankings in the 2013 ODAC Men's Cross Country Preseason Poll.  Lynchburg College collected the remaining three top nods as part of a 92-point showing to place second.  Guilford College is four points clear of Washington and Lee University for third with 74 tallies in the annual survey of the league's head coaches.

At the 2012 ODAC Cross Country Championships, it was Lynchburg who claimed top prize, placing four runners within the top-seven and all five scoring runners in the top-12 on the way to besting second place Bridgewater, 28 points to 57.  LC has won an ODAC-best 17 overall team titles, including the past five straight.  The Hornets' performance was led by individual champion Cody Stanton, whose time of 26:16.11 topped the field by more than 15 seconds over the eight-kilometer course at Peakview Elementary and Burtner Farm in Penn Laird, Va.

Stanton led LC's squad thru qualifying at the South/Southeast Regional Meet and into the NCAA Division III National Championships in Terre Haute, Ind.  Lynchburg, which placed 26th in the team standings, saw Stanton capture individual All-America honors (top 35 finishers) as he placed 25th (25:00.8) in a field of 279 competitors.  He was joined by teammates Lawrence Minor (162nd, 26:09.1), Nolan Compton (164th, 26:10.8), Evan Parry (227th, 26:43.1) and Brian Robinson (239th, 26:52.3).

Four individuals from ODAC schools joined LC's team in the Midwest.  Bridgewater's Luke Sohl, who finished second in the ODAC meet, chimed in 51st (25:19.6).  Guilford's Chad Norton placed 73rd (25:31.1), while fellow Quaker Andris Goncarovs finished 107th (25:45.6).  Roanoke College standout Tim Smith, winner of the 2011 ODAC individual crown, capped his college career by placing 147th (26:00.8).

Eight All-ODAC runners return from across the conference for the 2013 season, with a pair running under Bridgewater's flag.  Junior Luke Sohl (2nd - 26:31.66 at the 2012 ODAC Championships) has finished as the runner-up in each of the past two ODAC championship meets, earning a pair of first team honors.  Sophomore Matt Denlinger (11th - 27:41.69) was the highest finishing first year runner, earning him ODAC Rookie of the Year and second team laurels.  Senior Abe Rittenhouse (15th - 27:50.37) and junior Tim Miller (16th - 27:52.61) came up just short of all-conference recognition, but both return for a shot at a top-14 showing.  Senior Troy Jackson (21st - 28:13.54) and junior Keith Thomas (22nd - 28:15.95) will also push towards all-league status.

Lynchburg will be under new direction in 2013 as Simon Nyang takes over the men's reins in addition to his previous responsibilities guiding the LC women's program.  The Hornets also feature an all-conference duo returning to the Hill City.  Junior Anthony McBride (7th - 26:59.77) captured the final first team spot, while Parry (12th - 27:42.54) secured a place on the second team.  Sophomore Andrew Osborne (29th - 28:53.34) looks to climb the ODAC ladder.

Guilford returns a trio of All-ODAC runners, the most of any school in 2013.  Goncarovs (4th - 26:44.21) started his push towards a NCAA berth with first team honors, while Norton (8th - 27:01.49) collected second team accolades prior to competing on the national stage.  Fellow senior David Cason (9th - 27:21.90) was also a second teamer in 2012.

Washington and Lee University and Roanoke College finished within three points of each other at the championship meet.  New Generals head coach Brandon Spalding will look to senior Kane Thomas (19th - 28:09.64) and sophomores Levi Warring (30th - 28:54.25) and Blake Liebling (38th - 29:41.54) to lead the charge in 2013.  The Maroons welcome back second team sophomore Harrison Toney (14th - 27:48.36), in addition to the experience of senior Austin Grubb (25th - 28:41.57) and junior Cody Meadows (50th - 30:19.93).

Eastern Mennonite University will look to newcomers to retool the squad in 2013 under returning captain, junior Jesse Parker (47th - 30:12.26).  Two of those new faces include transfers Jacob Landis from Hesston College and Ryan Gehman from Montreat College.  Both have experience competing in the NJCAA and NAIA national meets, respectively.

Virginia Wesleyan College and Shenandoah University look to experience to lead their squads this season.  The Marlins feature senior Darren Driscoll (26th - 28:48.41), who earned the ODAC/Farm Bureau Insurance Scholar-Athlete of the Year award in 2012 and All-ODAC Second Team honors in 2011.  He'll be joined by sophomores Andrew Werner (37th - 29:40.84) and Glenn Rose (51st - 30:23.31).  SU has a pair of seniors leading the charge following its first year competing under the ODAC banner.  Ryan Taylor (17th - 29:04.92) came up a few spots short of all-conference status, while Kyle Lombardi (39th - 29:43.87) was a top-40 finisher.

Hampden-Sydney College, Emory & Henry College and Randolph College all feature solid returning contributors.  The Tigers are led by senior Andrew Stoddard (31st - 29:05.39) and sophomore William Imeson (49th - 30:16.01), while sophomore Nathan Fishell (54th - 30:39.23) leads a young group of Wasps that includes newcomers like Kevin Watts.  The WildCats look to senior Ryan Purrington (27th - 28:51.09) and junior Chris Hollingsworth (42nd - 29:50.13).

The 2013 cross country season begins on Friday, August 30, with the majority of ODAC schools competing in the ODAC Preview Meet at the The Manor Course in Farmville, Va.  That track will also serve as the championship course, which is slated for Saturday, November 2.  For more information, visit any of the participating schools' websites or go to the ODAC's home on the Internet at www.odaconline.com.  Don't forget to become a fan of the ODAC on Facebook and follow @odacathletics on Twitter.

2013 ODAC MEN'S CROSS COUNTRY PRESEASON POLL
(#) Denotes first place votes

1. Bridgewater (8)

98 pts.

2. Lynchburg (3)

92 pts.

3. Guilford

74 pts.

4. Washington and Lee

70 pts.

5. Roanoke

63 pts.

6. Eastern Mennonite

59 pts.

7. Virginia Wesleyan

40 pts.

8. Shenandoah

37 pts.

9. Hampden-Sydney

30 pts.

10. Emory & Henry

27 pts.

11. Randolph

15 pts.