By Taylor Mueller, Sports Information Assistant
ST. PAUL, Minn. – The Concordia men’s and women’s cross country teams traveled to St. Paul, Minn., on Saturday to compete in the Roy Griak Invitational cross country meet, which hosted numerous schools from across the nation.
Races consisted of schools from NAIA and Division I, II and III levels. Concordia competed in the division II races.
On the women’s side, senior Sarah Kortze led the way with a fifth place overall finish, and a time of 22:28. Senior Jena Schwalenberg was next in line, clocking in at 23:39 and a 30th place finish.
“I thought Sarah and Jena had very good races,” head coach Kregg Einspahr said. “Especially with their level of fitness right now, and having the experience of having ran this race already, this is a huge race so that really helped.”
Freshman Kim Wood followed with a time of 25:11, sophomore Megan Letts was next at 25:23 and freshman Megan Burma finished in 25:25.
As a team, the Bulldogs took 14th place of 38 teams.
The men finished in 11th place overall out of 36 teams, and were led by sophomore Ben Sievert, who took 29th place and finished in 26:28. Junior Hayden Hohnholt was next in 26:42 and took 35th place. Junior Beau Billings followed in 65th place with a time of 27:06. Freshman Jordan Potrzeba finished in 27:51, and senior Joel Heckman ran 27:57.
“I thought our top three runners had good races,” Einspahr said. “We still have a big gap between our three and then four and five runners. Joel and Jordan ran well. I thought we had a god race, but we can be much better than we were today.”
Einspahr summed up the day by comparing both the women’s and men’s teams, and what needs to take place to do better in the future.
“Our younger runners ran well, but after running this race a couple times, we can get a better feel for what it’s like. I really feel that our younger runners can get better. We ran well today, but we were a solid team, not a great team.”
Concordia now shifts focus to the Briar Cliff Invite on Oct. 6, when it will travel to McCook Lake, S.D.