South Bend, Ind. – The Bethel men's cross country team finished 10th out of 14 in the Bethel Invitational on Friday afternoon. Five Pilots ran season- or personal-best times in the meet, as the Pilots finished with their best gap-times of the season.
Collin Wiersema (SR/Byron Center, Mich.) paced the Pilots, crossing the finish at a season-best 27:44 and 44th place overall. Evan Herr-Knispel (JR/Elkhart, Ind.) finished behind Wiersema with a personal record 27:46. Justin Contreras (FR/Ligonier, Ind.) and Alex DeLuna--with a season-best 28:33--crossed next for the Pilots, while Chad Williams (JR/South Bend, Ind.) rounded out the top five for the Pilots. One thru five for the Pilots were only separated by 53 seconds, the smallest gap of the season.
Erick Contreras (FR/Ligonier, Ind.) set a personal record with a 29:04 and Kole Hanke (FR/Bridgman, Mich.) gave the Pilots their best one-thru-seven gap time of the season of 1:27. Guadalupe Mendoza (FR/Elkhart, Ind.) also set a personal record in the meet.
"We showed good progress in this meet," stated Head Coach Ryan Sommers. "We haven't seemed to put it together where the majority have a good day at once, which may be due to us being a younger team. It was encouraging to see Collin and Alex step up today, and Evan continues to impress. I'm excited to see what happens in the next month."
The Pilots compete in 18 intercollegiate sports for men and women. The Bethel College Athletic Department earned the NAIA Champion of Character Five-Star Gold Institution and produced 17 NAIA Scholar-Teams last season. While accumulating 3 NAIA National Championships and 32 NCCAA National Championships by 10 different athletic teams, Bethel has also produced 143 NAIA All-American honors and 309 NAIA Scholar-Athlete honors over the past decade.
Bethel College is an accredited Christian college offering associate's, bachelor's, and master's degrees in more than 70 areas of study.