Tim Hansen, Sports Information Director
WICHITA, Kan. – The Rogers State men’s cross country team won the 2017 Heartland Conference Men’s Cross Country Championship by one point for the Hillcats’ first-ever league team title on Saturday morning. Senior Baylor Harvey took his third individual title, and the Cats swept every individual award.
Harvey was named the Heartland Conference Runner of the Year for the third time, Head coach Chris McCormick was selected as the Heartland Conference Coach of the Year and Elijah Mackey garnered Heartland Conference Freshman of the Year honors.
RSU posted a score of 34 points to defeat Dallas Baptist University by one as the Patriots finished with 35 points. Oklahoma Christian finished third with 72 points.
Harvey returned to the same course where he won his first conference championship in 2014 and once again cruised to a league individual title. Harvey won by 18 seconds with his time of 24:38.3 in the 8-kilometer race. The senior from Cleveland, Okla. won the conference in 2014 and two-consecutive seasons in 2016 and 2017. Harvey redshirted during the 2015 season.
The Hillcats placed five runners in the top 12 with all garnering All-Heartland Conference First Team honors. After Harvey for RSU was junior Seth Whittington in sixth place in 25:25.4. Mackey, the freshman of the year, covered the course in 25: 32.3 to place seventh and run a new personal best. Sophomore Colton Green made it three straight Hillcats to cross the finish line as he placed in eighth, timing 25:35.7 in the race. In the final scoring spot was senior Ryan Alexander who got under 26 minutes for the first time in his career with a personal-best time of 25:57.9 for 12th place.
Sophomore Byrun Ratliff missed being all-conference by .01 of a second as he finished in 18th in a time of 26:27.4. Brooks Cataudella placed 26th overall and in the seventh spot in the Hillcat lineup as the sophomore finish in 26:47.2.
The Hillcats travel to the NCAA Division II South Central Regional Championship on Nov. 4 in Canyon, Texas hosted by West Texas A&M.
Individual Award Winners
Runner of the Year: Baylor Harvey
Freshman of the Year: Elijah Mackey
Coach of the Year: Chris McCormick
All-Heartland Men’s Cross Country First Team
1-Rogers State 34
1-Baylor Harvey 24:38.3
6-Seth Whittington 25:25.4
7-Elijah Mackey 25:32.3
8-Colton Green 25:35.7
12-Ryan Alexander 25:57.9
18-Byrun Ratliff 26:27.4
26-Brooks Cataudella 26:47.2
35-Tristan Owens 27:11.1
37-Nick Williams 27:19.1
39-Daniel Driskill 27:20.9
40-Cruz Chavez 27:28.7
43-Justin Noble 27:47.9
48-Chris Largent 28:15.5
2-Dallas Baptist University 35
3-Oklahoma Christian 72
4-Lubbock Christian 108
6-St. Edward’s 173
7-Texas A&M International 189
8-UA Fort Smith 229