Cross country to compete Friday at NCAA South Regionals
Victoria Hutchens (left), Adam Chase (right)
Cross country to compete Friday at NCAA South Regionals
Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Bucs look to continue momentum from solid performances at SoCon Championships

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (Nov. 13, 2014) – Following strong performances at the SoCon Championships two weeks ago, the ETSU cross country program’s season continues on Friday with both the men’s and women’s teams competing in the NCAA Division I South Regional Championships at Apalachee Regional Park.

The women will kickoff the action on Friday in a 6K scheduled to start at 9 a.m., while the men will follow in a 10K at 10 a.m.

"We look forward to a great opportunity Friday at the NCAA South Regional Championships," said ETSU Director of Cross Country George Watts. "Our goal is to have representation at the NCAA Championships in the near future. The teams worked hard all season and their expectations remain lofty."

The field of competition will feature 25-plus teams -- on each side -- from throughout the Southeast including numerous regional rivals. In addition to ETSU, the Southern Conference will be represented at the meet by three other league schools including Chattanooga, Mercer and Samford.

Last season at Regionals, the Buccaneer men finished 16th out of 26 teams behind a 53rd-overall placement from Filip Jalovy (Modrice, Czech Republic), while the women placed 18th out of 27 squads with Katie Hirko (Oley, Pa.) pacing the Bucs with a 28th-overall finish.

ETSU will look to build off of a solid conference meet where both teams finished among the top four. The Blue & Gold men turned in a runner-up performance and were led by sophomore Simeon Roberts (Greeneville, Tenn.) who placed 11th overall with a personal-best 24:48.01 time in the 8K. This placement allowed Roberts to secure Second Team All-SoCon honors and was joined on this team by teammate Sean Duffy (Jonesborough, Tenn.) who placed 14th with a career-best race of 24:56.25.

"The men's team should be improved over last year's race and our four seniors hope to make this their best ever. Four of our seven runners have raced on this course before and that should make a difference. I've been very pleased with this group's work ethic and team unity."

On the women’s side, the Bucs were paced by junior Katie Hirko (Oley, Pa.) who recorded a collegiate-best time of 16:50.41 in the 5K to earn First Team All-SoCon Honors.

"Our women's team is young, but I expect this year's race to be our highest finish in the three years I've been here. Katie Hirko has a chance to do quite well and the team as a whole is significantly improved over the second half of the season. With no seniors, this team is racing to improve and preparing for bigger goals for next year."

For more information on the 2014 Division I South Region Cross Country Championships, please click here.

Stay tuned to on Friday afternoon for a recap and results from the meet.

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