JACKSON, Tenn. – Nov. 20, 2007– The Union University men’s cross country team capped off its best season in program history with an eighth-place finish in the NAIA National Championship meet Nov. 17.
The race was held at the Dr. Wayne E. Dannehl Cross Country Course in Kenosha, Wis. It was the first team appearance for the Union men in the national meet, after winning their first ever NAIA Region XI title and fourth straight TranSouth Conference Tournament championship.
Freshman Henry Rop finished fifth among 258 of the best runners in the NAIA, with a time of 24:48 to lead the Bulldogs. Rop was the star runner for Union this season, winning four of the six races in which he competed. He also finished fourth in the Memphis Twilight meet.
Union also had the first two runners in program history to receive NAIA All-American honors. Rop and senior Douglas Martin, who finished 23rd in the national meet, were among the top 30 runners named All-Americans.
In addition to the two All-Americans, Union also boasted three NAIA Scholar Athletes. Martin, along with senior Phillip Thompson and junior Josh Abbotoy, earned the honor given to juniors or seniors with a grade point average of 3.5 or higher.
Other Union team members who competed in the national meet were sophomore Seth Covington, freshman Nelphat Boit and senior Steve Bredfeldt.
Malone College placed three runners in the top 10 to capture the team championship.