MEQUON, Wis. - The Rockford University men's and women's cross country teams performed well at the 2017 NACC Championships on Saturday finishing in 8th and 9th place respectively. This marks the third straight year the RU men have finished eighth, while Rockford's ninth place finish on the women's side is the highest since 2014 when the ladies took seventh.
The Regents' top performer at the NACC Championships was junior Joe Werkheiser (Lena, Ill.). Werkheiser recorded his highest ever finish at the conference championships when he placed 21st and crossed the finish line in 28:11.0.
Christian Devant (Winnebago, Ill.) and Bailey Beard (Rockford, Ill.) were right on each others heels as the two were separated by less than nine seconds. Devant finished in 45th place with a time of 30:13.2 and Beard finished 46th with a time of 30:21.3.
Cristan Newton (Shreveport, La.), Nick Noel (Belvidere, Ill.) and Colton Ooyen (Winnebago, Ill.) were the final three RU men to participate on Saturday. Newton led the trio as he crossed the finish line in 30:36.2 to place 51st. Noel and Ooyen finished in 71st and 79th with respective times of 32:57.3 and 34.24.0
Junior Lexie Collins (Earlville, Ill.) was the top performer for the RU women's team. Collins set a new personal best in the 6k crossing the finish line in 26:40.2 and placing 21st. Collins' time on Saturday was nearly 50 seconds faster than her previous best time, which she set two weeks ago.
Freshmen Allyssa Hobbs (Sterling, Ill.) and Elina Lynge Wagner (Hvidovre, Denmark) were Rockford's next two highest finishers for the women's team. Hobbs finished 66th with a time of 29:08.2, while Wagner placed 77th and crossed the finish line in 29:58.2.
Tracy Wang (Lianyungang, China) and Jamie Buechner (Island Lake, Ill.) were the final two runners for Rockford. Wang took 97th with a time of 31:56.8 and Buechner finished 103rd with a time of 32:41.0.
The RU cross country teams return to competition on Saturday, November 11 at the NCAA Division III Midwest Regional.