Runners who placed in the top 7 overall at the Regional meet earned 1st Team All-Region honors. Grace had three different runners achieve this honor. Kent Herring (Evart, MI) led the men’s team with an impressive 2nd place overall finish. His time of 29:22 was a new personal record for the season as he held off the third place runner from Maranatha Baptist by 7 seconds. Having a huge breakout race for the women’s team was senior Lucy Nusbaum (Holland, MI). Nusbaum also placed 2nd overall for the women’s 5k race and set a massive new lifetime personal best time of 21:03. Not to be outdone, Alyssa Gennety (Jackson, MI) ran a huge race coming off a mid-season injury and placed 5th overall with a personal record of 21:31. Herring, Nusbaum, and Gennety all received plaques for their All-Region honors.
Both of the ladies and Herring ran competitively and fought for their positions throughout the race. Also of note on the men’s side was junior Ben Bird (Allendale, MI) who narrowly missed All-Region honors with a 9th place finish but also set a new personal record time in the 8k of 31:06.
“We just gave the NCCAA a glimpse of what we are capable of doing at Nationals,” noted Grace head coach Gerry Verwey. “When you add in the strength of our other three girls who did not compete today, we should find ourselves near the top of the scoring at Nationals in two weeks’ time. If we can get healthy and continue to run as a team, we will reach our true potential.”
The Tigers will now prepare for the NCCAA D2 National Cross Country Championships on November 10 in Warsaw, IN. With a team goal of placing in the top 4 at Nationals, the Tigers will have to carry the same racing mentality from Regionals into the National meet.