Hawks cross country repeats as SSAC Champions

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Martin Hernandez (left) and Jared Carson (right) in the SSAC Championship

Martin Hernandez (left) and Jared Carson (right) in the SSAC Championship

Nov. 8, 2008

Complete Results

Rome, Ga. - It's hard to get better than first, but the Shorter College men's cross country team found a way on Saturday as they took the top spot in the Southern States Athletic Conference tournament at Stonebridge Golf Course with a perfect score of 15. The Hawks took all five of the top spots to advance to the National Tournament in two weeks.

"Getting a perfect score was our 'great' goal for today and it's awesome to see that realized," said head coach Jay Stephenson. "They have done everything I've asked of them and it's an exciting day for this team."

Shorter's Martin Hernandez took first place in the 8k race, with a time of 24:59.06, to repeat as the SSAC Runner of the Year. Jared Carson followed close behind in second with a 25:05.99, and in third was Josh Carson with a 25:45.09.

Cyrus Wakaba took fourth with a 25:47.15, and Steven Rich rounded out the top five with a 25:47.97.

All five of the above runners were also named to the SSAC All-Conference team.

"There is no doubt of the talent on this team and the drive they have to finish on top," added Stephenson. "We're looking forward to our next race in two weeks."

Stephenson also received honors of his own, as he was named the SSAC Coach of the Year, following the Hawks' first place finish.

Lee University finished in second with 51 points, with runners Will Jayroe and Chad Dean both being the 6th and 7th members of the All-Conference team. Berry College took third place with 61 points.

Other Shorter runners in the race were Ben Anthony (9th - 26:14.73), Brenton Widener (19th - 27:45.90), Therron Smith (21st - 28:01.70), Josh Giannoni (25th - 28:37.03), Allen O'Neal (29th - 29:27.08) and Alex Compton (32nd - 29:44.44)

The Hawks will now repeat their trip to the NAIA National Championship in two weeks as the SSAC Champion, held in Kenosha, Wis., at the University of Wisconsin-Parkside.

Shorter College Men's Cross Country
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