WARRENVILLE, Ill. - History was made for the Goshen College cross country program as they competed alongside a strong field at the Benedictine University (Ill.) Eagle Invitational over the weekend.
The Maple Leaf men won the event, logging just 55 points to finish in front of 12 other programs, including NCAA DIII #9 Wheaton College. Prior to the event, a Goshen runner had clocked an 8k time of less than 26 minutes less than 20 times in over 30 years. On Friday, three Maple Leafs did so to lead the Goshen charge.
"The men's performance may be the best overall in school history," said ninth-year head coach Doug Yoder. "I'm not sure that our 1-5, 1-7, and 1-10 times have ever been matches by any other GC team. We are starting to put things together as a team and still have room for improvement."
Senior Billy Funk tied for the sixth fastest time in program history, finishing fourth overall in 25:43. Sophomore Moses Kaelo ran the 11th quickest time ever for Goshen in 25:51 and classmate Jordan Smeltzer finished ninth in 25:59.
The gap times were incredible for the Maple Leafs with just 16 seconds separating runner one through three, 58 seconds between the top five and just 59 seconds from one to seven.
"There are a couple of injuries that we are dealing with but Billy Funk, Moses Kaelo, Jordan Smeltzer and Daniel Zelaya all ran to the front of the race and had strong finishes," Yoder continued. "Our 5-10 guys are starting to tighten their pack and could eventually be within 15 or 20 seconds of each other. It was a great win especially finishing in front of such strong programs."
Goshen will continue its season when they run in the Bethel College Invitational in South Bend next Friday.
4. Billy Funk - 25:43
6. Moses Kaelo - 25:51
9. Jordan Smeltzer - 25:59
16. Daniel Zelaya - 26:22
23. Jacob GunderKline - 26:41
24. Alejandro Rodriguez - 26:42
25. Lucas Harnish - 26:42
Tim Lehman - 27:02
Brock Gunderkline - 27:08
Tijs Buskermolen - 27:52
Andrew Witkowski - 28:22
Kolton Nay - 30:03
Mitchell Brickson - 32:18
Juan Carlos Diaz - 34:13
Quinn Brenneke - 36:00
Barrett Donna - 38:50