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Tayler Godar finished 10 spots back, a mere 18.04 seconds, behind fellow Mid-South Conference competitor University of the Cumberlands' Danielle Hoop in her first race of the season. The Georgetown College men's and women's cross country team started the 2014 races with the Queen City meet in Cincinnati.
Her 19 minutes 36 seconds and seven hundredths of a second finish helped the Tigers to finish 11th out of 20 teams. They were two teams behind the Patriots, both of which are NCAA schools. The split between the top five scoring runners for GC was 2:47.80
When four of your top finishers were not even in the team's top five a season ago, finishing sixth is a solid base. Georgetown College men's cross country team had one lone runner, Sam Heaton, who was a scorer in the 2012 Mid-South Conference meet. Transfers and injuries depleted the foundation coach Todd McDaniel started a season ago, but he finished with more runners in the Top 30 this season.
Georgetown College men's cross country team looks to make noise Saturday morning in the Mid-South Conference meet, hoping to get some guys high enough to qualify for nationals in a few weeks.
Before the gun went off in Rio Grande, Ohio though, the Tigers flexed its brain muscle. GC tied Campbellsville University for the most All-Academic honorees – six. Peyton Anderson, Chris Bartlett, Brad Cundiff, Joe Durbin, Sam Heaton and Nick Slucher all earned a 3.25 or better and are sophomore or higher in class status.
Georgetown College women's cross country team has steadily been sending a message – watch out we are coming. With harrier Tayler Godar leading the way, the Tigers have been tracking the competition and improving every week. It is the pack-like mentality that has also helped them garner votes this past week in the NAIA Coaches' Poll.
"This is a fantastic group of runners and they all understand the true sense of team," said GC coach Todd McDaniel. "I knew they would eventually be in the rankings. They run so well together and know when to push a race or split up and push forward."
Georgetown College women's cross country harriers once again showed what could be just around the corner. Running at Cedarville University's Invitational, the ladies ran a 6k rather than the normal 5k and finished just nine points behind Mid-South Conference foe University of the Cumberlands and everyone else above them was an NCAA Division II school or higher.
"It was a great race and you have to factor in the conditions as well," said Tiger coach Todd McDaniel. "Cedarville was hit pretty heavy with rain the past two days, but the course held up fairly well. Our men ran first and thus ran in a circle around where the women would then have to run.
"The footing was a bit tougher and I wanted to gage our runners after the difficult test I tossed at them this past weekend at Centre. They were a bit behind their paces from this past Saturday, but take in the extra distance, conditions and the mild temperature and I'm extremely pleased with this race."