Meet Info: CSM/Doane NAIA Classic

By Jacob Knabel on Oct. 18, 2023 in Cross Country

SEWARD, Neb. – Following a week off from competition, the Concordia Cross Country squads are preparing for the sixth and final meet of the 2023 regular season. The Bulldog men’s and women’s teams will be headed to Ashland, Neb., on Saturday for the Blazing Tiger NAIA Classic co-hosted by College of Saint Mary and Doane. According to Doane, the men’s race will feature teams with current NAIA national rankings of 4, 6, 9, 15, 22, 23 and 25. On the women’s side, the race will include teams with current NAIA national rankings of 1, 3, 4, 6, 7 and 8.

Head Coach Matt Beisel’s women’s team has been ranked No. 8 in back-to-back NAIA coaches’ polls. Meanwhile, the men had received votes nationally on Oct. 5 before going unranked with the release of the Oct. 12 poll.

Blazing Tiger NAIA Classic – Saturday, Oct. 21
Mahoney State Park | Ashland, Neb.
-10 a.m. – women’s 6k
-10:45 a.m. – men’s 8k
-Results (available after the meet on Saturday)
-Meet Webpage

Besel referred to the performances at the Briar Cliff Invite on Oct. 7 as the best all-around team races of the 2023 season. The women placed third out of 17 teams and the men placed sixth out of 18 teams at the meet held in North Sioux City, S.D. Individually, the Bulldogs were led by Kylahn Freiberg (21:40.12 time in the 6k) and Calvin Rohde (25:17.16 time in the 8k). At the four meets prior to the Briar Cliff Invite, the Concordia women placed ninth out of 29 at the Augustana Twilight, fifth out of 20 at the Greeno/Dirksen Invite, 10th out of 37 at the Griak Invite and second out of three at the Dean White Invite. Meanwhile, the men placed 12th out of 32 at the Augustana Twilight, eighth out of 24 at the Greeno/Dirksen Invite, 17th out of 32 at the Griak Invite and second out of three at the Dean White Invite.

The Blazing Tiger NAIA Classic will have the added purpose of determining some of the final spots in the Concordia lineup for the upcoming GPAC Championships (Nov. 4). Each team is allowed to enter a maximum of 10 men’s and 10 women’s runners into the conference meet. Concordia returns four competitors who earned all-conference accolades last season: Freiberg (eighth place), Rylee Haecker (15th place), Julie McIntyre (14th place) and Calvin Rohde (14th place).

The 2023 GPAC Cross Country Championships will be hosted at Adams Homestead and Nature Preserve in North Sioux City, the same site for the Briar Cliff Invite. The Bulldogs turned in 2022 GPAC placements of second on the men’s side and third on the women’s side.