November 5th, 2019
GC men's cross country finishes 22nd at nationals
Jordan leads Lakers by placing 74th in Division III championships
Westfield, Mass. – Every single Laker literally saved his best for last.
All six members of the Garrett College men's cross country team set a personal record at Saturday's NJCAA Division III national championship meet. Those individual performances added up to a 22nd-place team finish for the Lakers' first-year program.
Christian Jordan led the way for the Lakers, finishing the 8-kilometer course in 29:51.24 to claim 74th place. Zach Warnick (114th, 31:19.80), Bryson Brill (133rd, 32:18.61), Seth Chason (146th, 32:57.68), and Garrett Beaulieu (163rd, 34:09.93) were the Lakers' other team scorers, while Richard Granke (193rd, 40:20.45) was the sixth GC competitor.
"Pretty much across the board everyone dropped at least 35 or 40 seconds off their previous best," said GC assistant coach Phil Warnick. "Garrett [Beaulieu] dropped a minute, I think Seth [Chason] dropped about 1:30 or 1:40, and our sixth runner [Granke] lowered his PR [personal record] by over four minutes."
Before posting those new personal records, Phil Warnick said the Lakers had to get over the size of the stage on which they found themselves.
"There were about 200 racers and I think our guys started out a little bit awe-struck," said Warnick. "They were dead-silent during the course walk – and my group is never silent.
"Once they realized everybody was going to be nervous, they were able to get into a competitive mindset and they gave it their all," added Warnick. Mineral Area (Mo.) College won the team title, totaling 54 points to runner-up Howard Community College's 79 points. Howard – like Garrett, a member of the Maryland Junior College Athletic Conference – was led by Stephen Barr (8th, 27:10.66) and Jacob Havins (16th, 27:39.59).
Harper (Ill.) College was a distance third in the team standings with 152 points despite placing two runners among the top six finishers.
Phil Warnick thinks the Lakers will be able to use this year's national race experience as a launching pad to future success.
"Just getting to nationals was a big win for us," said Warnick. "I think they realized if they did it once, what's to stop them from doing it again. A lot of my freshmen are excited about next season."
Notes: Edwin Kipainoi of St. Charles (Mo.) Community College was the individual winner in 26:30.96.
Jordan, Warnick, Brill and Granke all ran for Southern Garrett High while Beaulieu is from Northern Garrett High. Chason is from Fallston High in Fallston, MD.