Cross Country Wins Big Across the Country
The NCU’S Women’s Cross-country team has accomplished some outstanding things throughout this Fall 2014 season. Placing third in the nation and first in our conference is something the whole school should applaud. These ladies work very hard and are a very tight-knit team, showing the true sense of team spirit. In a previous interview, head coach Heike McNeil had this to say about her team after they had won the conference championship, “Our women consistently work as a team and this year especially they have shown they race for a higher purpose. They aren’t just out there for themselves or for the team but most importantly for the glory of God. It was a good day for most of them and you know you have a great team when one of your top runners has a bad day and takes a fifth spot and the team still wins dramatically. The way the girls encourage each other, pray for each other and lift each other up, that is what makes all the difference.”
Alyssa Harmon (sophomore) finished at the NAIA National race in Lawrence Kansas in eight place. Harmon broke the school record for NAIA National championship events by three seconds, the past record was help by Brittany Peterson. Harmon and teammate Sierra Brown also received All-American honors for the first time, joining a list of three other athletes: Brittany Peterson, Allison Duvenez, and Stephanie Hescock. Among these two runners there were five other participants racing from NCU: Allison Duvenez (senior), Rosa Schmidt (freshman), Shea Vallaire (sophomore), Michelle Fletcher (sophomore), and Natalie Kogutkiewicz (sophomore).
There were lots of personal records shattered and relationships built throughout this season, and with the team only losing two seniors, Allison Duvenez and Emily McLean, there can only be more success for the awaiting seasons. Freshman Rosa Schmidt says, “I couldn’t have asked for a better team or coaches. All season I was continually amazed with how supportive everyone is. Every practice has been a blast getting to run with awesome people. I am so excited for next year. Our team is continually improving and I know we can do great things!” It is obvious to see around campus that the Cross Country community is a family like team, and this atmosphere has to be what produced the greatness that came from this season.