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Men’s Cross Country Records Top-10 Finish at Great Lakes Regional Championship

Junior Nick Irwin (Photo courtesy of Milton Woods)
Junior Nick Irwin (Photo courtesy of Milton Woods)

SHELBYVILLE, Ind. – The Baldwin Wallace University men's cross country team recorded a top-10 finish for the first time in 18 years by taking ninth place at the 2018 NCAA Division III Great Lakes Regional Championships, hosted by Franklin (Ind.) College at the Blue River Park.

BW placed ninth of 33 teams with 288 points while Calvin (Mich.) College captured the men's team title with a total of 56 points. Otterbein University was the highest-finishing Ohio Athletic Conference program, placing second overall.

The ninth-place finish marks the first time since 2000 that BW has landed in the top 10 at the regional championships when the Yellow Jackets placed a program-high eighth.

"Our goal for the guys at the beginning of the season was to finish in the top 10 at regionals and it's a great stride forward for us as a program," said Coordinator of Cross Country and Track and Field and Head Cross Country Coach Joe Eby. "They executed the plan we laid out for them really well."

Leading the way for the first time this season was junior Nick Irwin (Westlake) as he barely missed out on All-Great Lakes Region honors, which is awarded to the top 35 runners at the meet. The junior turned in a career-best time of 26:02.0 to place 36th, just 0.3 seconds behind the 35th-place runner. Sophomore two-time All-Ohio Athletic Conference performer Josh Hickmott (Clay, N.Y./Liverpool) took 45th place in a time of 26:10.2 while junior All-OAC and Academic All-OAC performer Isaac Wilson (Tylersburg, Pa./North Clarion) was six seconds behind his teammate in 50th place with a time of 26:16.7.

Senior Spencer Mahon (North Royalton) and sophomore Spencer Roberts (West Seneca, N.Y./West) rounded out the top-five finishers for the Yellow Jackets. Mahon finished his final collegiate meet in 71st place in a time of 26:35.4 while Roberts came in 86th place after crossing the finish line in 26:42.7.

The Yellow Jackets will only graduate one runner from its top five performers as they look toward the 2019 season with a goal of continuing to get better with each race and competing in the Ohio Athletic Conference, the Great Lakes Region and nationally.