Raymond Powers EMU Men to Fourth-Place Finish at NCAA Great Lakes Regional
Provided by EMU
MADISON, Wis. (EMUEagles.com) – The No. 25 Eastern Michigan University men's cross country team turned in another strong performance today, Nov. 11, at the NCAA Great Lakes Regional in Madison, Wis. The Eagles finished fourth as a team with 99 points, marking an improvement of three points over last year.
Eastern held strong throughout the entire 10,000-meter race, competing against a number of tough, ranked teams. The Green and White had a number of harriers in the top-30 throughout the entire race, as the squad finished with all five scoring runners finishing 27th or better, including one in the top-five. Despite finishing fourth in comparison to third last year, the team's performance, in fact, improved by three points, as a number of harriers posted personal-best times.
At the 2,000-meter mark, the Eagles sixth place with 162 points. Individually, junior Lahsene Bouchikhi (Antwerp, Belgium - Stedelijk Lyceum Paardenmarkt Luchthaven) paced the squad, sitting in fifth in the early goings. Behind him, senior Nick Raymond (Erie, Mich. – Mason) held onto 21st, while redshirt junior Hlynur Andresson (Vestmannaeyjar, Iceland - Mountain Ridge) was 10 spots behind in 31st.
Moving to 4,000 meters, Bouchikhi maintained his top-10 spots, falling two spots into seventh. Raymond was able to move up seven spots, jumping into 14th, while Andresson fell six spots into 37th. The team, as a whole, still clung to sixth-place at this point.
Eastern then shook up the standings after passing the halfway mark, as Raymond snuck into 10th. Behind him, redshirt junior Abel Flores (Defiance, Ohio – Defiance) made a big move, jumping all the way to 18th. Andresson also regained some ground, moving back into 20th, while Bouchikhi dropped to 22nd. At this point, the spread separating first and 20th was less than two seconds. After the movement, Eastern improved their team standing by one place, moving into fifth.
The 8,000-meter mark saw Raymond continue to move up the leaderboards, as he sat in fifth at this point, and was less than a second away from first. Andresson improved his standing as well, moving into 16th, while Flores dropped three spots into 21st. The team remained in fifth, but was just 13 points out of second.
Raymond was ultimately able to hold onto fifth for the remainder of the race, as he crossed the finish line in 30:25.2, which was a career-best mark by nearly 15 seconds. Andresson was also able to finish strong, securing 16th-place with a time of 30:44.0, which bested his previous career-best time by about eight seconds.
From there, Flores ran to a 25th-place finish, clocking in at 31:07.4, which blew his previous personal-best out of the water by nearly two and a half minutes. Bouchikhi narrowly finished behind him, nabbing 26th in 31:10.9, which set a career-best by three seconds. Rounding out the top-five scorers for EMU was redshirt junior Mitch Lenneman (River Falls, Wis. – River Falls), as the Wisconsin native took home 27th after crossing the finish line in 31:11.9, setting a new personal-best by almost a minute.
Finally, both junior Csaba Matko (Racalmas, Hungary - Szechenyi Istvan Gimnazium) and senior John Knox (Gloversville, N.Y. – Gloversville) finished in the top-60. Matko was able to finish 43rd with a time of 31:38.4, while Knox brought home 56th in 31:51.8.
Based on their performances, the Green and White had three runners secure all-region honors. Raymond and Andresson earned the award for the second consecutive season, while Flores picked up the first of his career.
As the Eagles did not end up securing a top-two finish, they will now wait to see if they have earned an at-large bid to the upcoming NCAA Championships, which would mark the first NCAA Championships team appearance for the program since 2005. Raymond, however, appears to be in line to secure his second straight individual berth, as he was one of the top four finishers in the region not on an automatic-qualifying team.
The NCAA Championships are scheduled to be held next week, Saturday, Nov. 19, in Terre Haute, Ind.
Team Results (10K)
1. Wisconsin 51 pts
2. Michigan State 81 pts
3. Indiana 81 pts
4. Eastern Michigan 99 pts
5. Michigan 107 pts
EMU Individual Results
5. Nick Raymond 30:25.2
16. Hlynur Andresson 30:44.0
25. Abel Flores 31:07.4
26. Lahsene Bouchikhi 31:10.9
27. Mitch Lenneman 31:11.9
43. Csaba Matko 31:38.4
56. John Knox 31:51.8