Loras, Trinity earn Pre-Nationals titles

Familiar faces took top honors in the women’s race at the Hanover College Pre-National Invitational, as ninth-ranked Trinity University (Texas) easily captured the team title against NCAA Division II opponent Lewis University (Ill.), while reigning USTFCCCA Division III female athlete-of-the-week Chelsea Johnson lead wire-to-wire to outdistance the field by nearly 45 seconds.

Led by Maddie Murphy’s fourth-place finish (22:24.39), Trinity placed five athletes in the top 18 to tally 44 points to 73 by the Flyers.  Fifth-ranked Claremont-Mudd-Scripps Colleges (Calif.) placed two runners in the top six, but failed to complete a team score.  

Johnson’s time of 21:25.74 paced No. 22 College of St. Scholastica (Minn.) to a third place finish with 139 points. Her time is the 18th-fastest on the six-kilometer course that has hosted two previous national championship meets.

On the men’s side, unranked Loras College (Iowa) enjoyed an impressive 41-second spread to top No. 17 Claremont-Mudd-Scripps and No. 32 Manchester University (Ind.). Loras front-runners Sam Whan (26:02.00) and Ty Wittman (26:02.96) placed ninth and 10th as the Duhawks scored 66 points.

Manchester also enjoyed a spread of less than a minute to narrowly edge Claremont-Mudd-Scripps for second place, 85-91, in the 19-team field.

An injury prevented No. 6 Bowdoin College (Mass.) from completing a team score.

In a battle of New England Small College Athletic Conference all-Americans, Connecticut College’s Michael Leduc outpaced Bowdoin College’s (Maine) Coby Horowitz, taking top honors in 25:22.82. Horowitz covered the eight-kilometer course in 25:30.54.

Junior Claire Hinshaw (New Castle, Ind.) again paced the Hanover women, running 24:12.43, just six seconds off a personal best.

Freshman Cami Trachtman (Carmel, Ind.) and sophomore Rachel Smith (Brownsburg, Ind.) followed Hinshaw, running 25:05.58 and 25:11.65. Junior Paige Woods (North Manchester, Ind.) ran 25:16.73, while freshman Mai States (Indianapolis, Ind.) completed the Panthers' scoring with a 25:32.54 effort in her first six-kilometer race.

Hanover finished 15th in the 18-team invitational.

On the men’s side, junior Logan Wells (Scottsburg, Ind.) led Hanover, running 27:48.05. Sophomore Ben Franke (Seymour, Ind.) ran 28:23.97, while Brendan Kelly ran a season-best 28:38.10. Sophomore Drew Elston (Carmel, Ind.) also ran a season-best, improving by nearly a minute to 28:44.52. Freshman Jake Hally (Indianapolis, Ind.) completed the Hanover scoring , running 28:57.95.

Final Results: Women's Pre-Nationals / Men's Pre-Nationals