WATERTOWN, Wis. -- The 2019 Maranatha Cross Country seasons were filled with the usual ups and downs of college sports, but these seasons were memorable in more ways than one.
This morning, Maranatha held its annual Athletic Awards Assembly to honor the fall teams, and while the Cross Country seasons finished almost a month ago, the memories certainly linger, bringing to mind some noteworthy individual and team accomplishments.
To start things off, Jeremy Fopma won at what used to be his home course, edging a former Central College teammate to win the Dutch Invitational in a photo finish. The sophomore transfer quickly made a name for himself, as he earned an NCCAA Student-Athlete of the Week award for his trouble. Right away, Fopma made it clear that he could eventually challenge Will O'Malley's program record of a 26:52 8K set back in 2012.
It only took Fopma a few more weeks. As soon as he had a fast course and favorable conditions, the Sophomore left no doubt, posting a 26:28 8K at October's Wisconsin Private College Championships. It was still about 30 seconds shy of Fopma's PR, but the sophomore won the event and lept into first in the Maranatha record books.
The state championship win was Fopma's fourth of the season, as the sophomore won the following events:
|Wis. Private College Champ's||26:28||8K||10/19|
In winning NCCAA Nationals, Fopma becomes the third Maranatha runner to do so, as O'Malley (2011) and Caleb Wagner (2015) both took first at the season finale.
The next week after Fopma's win at the Dutch Invitational, both the Men's Team and the Women's Team qualified for NCCAA Nationals at just the second event of the season. Both of the squads were spirited and eager, and their times showed it. A list of each runner's best time of the season is listed below:
|Best Time (Women)||Time||Date||Event|
|Abigail Doak||22:02||11/16||NCCAA Nationals|
|Sierra John||22:47||11/16||NCCAA Nationals|
|Katie Jean Lingle||23:01||11/16||NCCAA Nationals|
|Anna Rossiter||23:13||10/11||Bethel Invitational|
|Taylor Ellis||29:20 (6K)||10/25||Oshkosh Open|
|Abigail Shetter||31:19 (6K)||10/25||Oshkosh Open|
|Haly Hendricks||32:07||11/16||NCCAA Nationals|
|Best Time (Men)||Time||Date||Event|
|Jeremy Fopma||26:28||10/19||Wis. Private College Champ's|
|Jordan Hoffmann||30:31||11/16||NCCAA Nationals|
|Jefferson Rupert||31:17||9/6||Dutch Invitational|
|Heath Holmes||33:40||10/11||Bethel Invitational|
|Jonathan Gilliam||34:24||10/11||Bethel Invitational|
|Drew Smith||34:20||10/25||Oshkosh Open|
|Eric Schmid||37:57||11/16||NCCAA Nationals|
|Zachary Brungard||46:11||9/14||Tom Hoffman Invitational|
In this morning's athletic awards assembly, the following awards were highlighted, as the team recognized both national award winners and team awards:
|Most Improved (Men)||Jordan Hoffmann|
|Most Valuable (Men)||Jeremy Fopma|
|Team Player (Men)||Drew Smith|
|Most Improved (Women)||Abigail Doak|
|Most Valuable (Women)||Sierra John|
|Team Player (Women)||Katie Jean Lingle|
|NCCAA All-American 1st Team Selection|
|NCCAA Scholar-Athletes (JR, SR, GS only)|
|James Rossiter||Jefferson Rupert|
|Haly Hendricks||Katie Jean Lingle|