Men's cross country aims for another successful season

Following a season with individual standouts, the Trinity men’s cross country team is ready to begin another season.

Last year, the team, led by head coach Bob Brickman, finished in the top half of every meet they competed in.  Along with that, the team placed fifth place at the CCAC Championship meet and came in third at the NCCAA National Championship meet.

This year, the team is looking to fill the holes left behind by three of their seniors, who were main contributors for the program. Although some of their core talent is returning, the team will look to some of their younger runners to step up this season.

One of the top returners for the Trolls this year is junior Caleb DeWeerd (Sioux Falls, S.D./Sioux Falls Christian High School). Last season, he earned NCCAA All-American honors, finishing 14th out of 71 runners at the championship meet. He also consistently finished in the top five each meet for the Trolls last season.

Also returning for Trinity is senior Brantley VanOverloop (Hudsonville, Mich./Covenant Christian High School). VanOverloop was also a contributor to the Trolls’ success last season, running his season-best 26:44.6 at the Purdue-Northwest Classic, where he finished in seventh place.

Junior Ryan Mathes (Midlothian, Va./Manchester High School) and sophomore Andrew Dobrescu (Algonquin, Ill./Harvest Christian Academy) are also expected to contribute greatly this season.

This year, the team hopes to continue finishing in the top half of the conference, with the ultimate goal of placing in the top four of the conference meet. They would also like to have a podium finish at the NCCAA National Championship again this year, which means they have to finish in the top four as a team.

To start off the season, both the men’s and women’s teams will head to the annual University of St. Francis Invitational. They will compete in other races throughout the season, but are looking forward to the Loyola University Invitational in Chicago, where they will run along Lake Michigan and face great competition.

They will finish out the season with the CCAC Championships and the NCCAA Championships. In the conference, University of St. Francis and Olivet Nazarene are anticipated to be at the top of the CCAC and rank in the top 10 of the NAIA, along with St. Xavier being a potential contender as well. The Trolls expect to be right behind these squads, fighting for a spot with St. Ambrose and other teams in the conference.