Meyer Claims Individual Title at AMC Cross Country Championship
JEFFERSON CITY - After hitting the four-mile marker even with Park's Daniel Tubei, Ryan Meyer kicked it into high gear over the final mile to take home the individual title at the American Midwest Conference Men's Cross Country Championships. Meyer's time of 25:15.4 was a new course record and helped the William Woods University men's cross country team to a third-place finish in the meet, with a team score of 64. The finish was also the second individual meet title for the Owls in program history.
Meyer took home AMC Runner of the Year honors after a dominating performance that saw him add three seconds to his margin of victory over the final 300 meters of the course. The finish earns him a fourth consecutive trip to the NAIA National Championship Meet, representing the AMC as an at-large runner.
Kaleb Wilson finished 11th for the Owls in the meet, posting a time of 28:13.8, with Zach Bryant charging home less than three seconds later with a time of 28:16.3, good for 12th. Corey Samples finished 14th in the meet with a time of 28:42. 8.
Reid Schmit posted a 26th-place finish for the Owls with a time of 29:44.3, with Brandon Buchanan just two spots back after a time of 30:06.9 on the 8K course.
Tyler Jones rounded out the Owls contingent in 38th with a time of 34:03.4.
In the team's first year of existence, Columbia College edged out Park University for the team title, led by Freshman of the Year Cody Gorham. Gorham led a pack of four Cougar runners that finished fourth through eighth, interrupted only by a seventh-place finisher for Park. The quick order was enough to overcome the finish by the Pirates, as CC tallied 36 points to Park's 37.
Hannibal-LaGrange University's Taylor Whitmire was named AMC Newcomer of the Year, finishing ninth in the 41-runner field.
Meyer also led the All-AMC team, and was joined by Tubei, Gorham and Whitmire on the squad, along with Thomas Chelulei and James Straubel from Park and Cameron Schmitz, Devin Sander and Michael McCulloch from Columbia College.
Meyer, Tubei, Chelulei, Straubel and Whitmire will represent the AMC as at-large runners in the 2012 NAIA Men's Cross Country National Championship Meet, to be held Nov. 17 in Vancouver, Wash.
Columbia College's Tom Cornell earned AMC Coach of the Year honors.