CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. -- Belmont men's cross country finished second only behind Eastern Kentucky in the OVC Championship 8K this morning, with five Bruins finishing in the top 20 individually and OVC Freshman of the Year, Jacob McLeod, finishing second.
Belmont finished only 20 points behind Eastern Kentucky, who is currently ranked No. 20 in the nation.
"Guys did well finishing second. It was about where we were expecting," said senior Matt Edwards. "We gave EKU a good run, but their just a class above us right now. But the big one is in two weeks at regionals. Regionals has always been the goal, so we'll get after that now."
"We came into this [race] hoping for two things: a second place finish and coming out of this thing healthy and uninjured and ready to roll for the next couple of weeks, so we achieved our goals, and we're pleased overall with the performance," said head coach Jeff Langdon. "We're excited about regionals. There are about six or seven teams that could take that No. 2 spot, and we're one of them, so it gives us a chance to move forward."
The McLeod Brothers, Jacob McLeod and Kaleb McLeod, both finished in the top 5, with Jacob McLeod finishing 2nd (24:07.2) and Kaleb McLeod finishing 5th (24:27.4). Jacob McLeod, OVC Freshman Runner of the Year, finished with a 10 second lead ahead of the third place finisher.
The Bruins will be using that confidence from their great result to prepare the next two weeks for regionals. The top two teams move on to the National Championships, and Belmont will be looking to grab that No.2 spot.
Belmont returns to action on Friday, November 9, as they will compete in the NCAA South Regionals in Tallahassee, Fla.
No.2 Jacob McLeod, Fr., 24.07.2
No.5 Kaleb McLeod, Jr., 24:27.4
No.11 Matthew Edwards, Sr., 24:50.1
No.13 Aidan Thompson, Jr., 24:52.4
No.19 Declan McManus, Jr., 25:08.4
No.32 Taylor Vroon, Fr., 25:42.1
No.34 Chase Ballard, Jr., 25:49.2
No.43 Daniel White, So., 26:17.2
No.57 Kaden Eaton, Sr., 26:46.2
No.59 Jackson Vroon, Fr., 26:58.6