By Isaac Bourne, Sports Editor
October 12, 2023
The OBU Cross Country team is just a few days away from heading to Russellville, Arkansas for the GAC Championships, and head coach Steve Guymon is ready for a good showing from his team.
“Both men’s and women’s teams have had a good season so far,” Guymon said. “We’ve had five meets and improved every week, and we are hoping for a good showing at the conference meet.”
The women’s team is hoping to repeat as conference champions with some freshman talent to back up a talented group of upperclassmen. Junior Macie Cash leads the way, dropping an 18:27.5 in the 5K at the Chili Pepper Cross Country Festival. Behind her at the meet in Fayetteville for OBU was fellow junior Mackenzie Davis (18:43.4), sophomore Allison Hylkema (18:45.5) and senior Taylor Koeth (19:00.6).
As for freshman performances this season, Emelia Eriksson found her way under 19 minutes at the Ozarks Invitational, clocking in at 18:59.6, while Lucy Holden was just short in Fayetteville with a 19:00.9.
With another talented roster, there is no reason to believe that the Lady Tigers do not add to their collection of rings on Oct. 21.
On the men’s side, the team is headlined by three sub-26-minute performances in the 8K going into the conference meet. The biggest surprise for the Tigers has been freshman Noah Embrey, who threw down a lightning-quick 25:39.4 in Nashville, Tennessee at the Michael Pretorius Invitational. The time put him as the fifth-fastest 8K time in school history. Junior Whit Lawrence (25:46.0) and sophomore Dylan Dew (25:47.9) have since gotten close, but have yet to reach Embrey’s time.
It all converges in Russellville, where the trio will come together against other GAC opponents in pursuit of a GAC title.