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(Grand Rapids, Mich.) The day could not have been better for a cross country meet. The course at Riverside Park was firm and fast, the wind calm and the temperature crisp and cool.
Cornerstone University's men needed a good showing in the thirty team field that included the best in the NAIA from Michigan, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio and Wisconsin.
The Golden Eagles' front four raced well together as they have all season. Jared Courtright set the pace while Louis Falland, Thomas Bambach and Travis Mabe worked their way toward him. Jared finished 30th in 25:56 with Falland breaking 26 minutes for the first time, two places back in 25:59. Bambach was 42nd at 26:10 and Mabe 48th in 26:19.
The important fifth man, Cody Risch, has been gradually improving after a summer injury. Coming into the race his job was to get as close to the front four as possible. Rich produced a season best 26:31 to place 63rd giving Cornerstone a 1-5 gap of just 35 seconds.
Shawnee State beat the hosts from Aquains 64 to 82 for the team title. Cornerstone placed sixth with 215 points.
The Golden Eagles return to Riverside Park on November 5 for the Wolverine-Hoosier Athletic Conference Championships.