The duo of Ian McKenzie and Jonathan Facio helped bring home Simpson’s first all-conference honor since 2012 as the Storm came in fifth at the Iowa Conference Men’s Cross Country Championship form Max Cross Country Course on Saturday.
Courtesy Storm Athletics, click here! Feature photo: Ian McKenzie-Dowling-Simpson and Jon Facio-Clinton-Simpson ©Jim Kirby 2017
Competing in one of the toughest conferences in the nation, Simpson finished just two points out of fourth behind Luther. The top three teams—Loras, Wartburg, and Nebraska Wesleyan— are all nationally ranked and the Norse are eighth in the Central Region.
Simpson finished with 119 points while Luther had 117. A year ago the Storm came in sixth overall and were 80 points out of fifth place.
Simpson’s top finisher in two of three meets this season, McKenzie ran 25:53.0 to place 13th in the field of 168 runners to earn the first all-conference honor of his career.
Facio continued his breakout season with a 15th-place finish, navigating the course in 26:02.1. The sophomore improved 73 spots from his conference finish a year ago when he came in 88th.
The last time a Simpson cross country runner earned all-conference honors was in 2012 when Joe Farrand came in fifth. The last time two Storm runners earned all-conference honors in the same year was 2008 when Eric Osterhaus and Eric Patten came in fifth and sixth, respectively.
“Our men had a fantastic day and I could not be more excited for the group. The investment they have made since early June was rewarded today. Ian ran terrific once again to earn his first all-conference honor. What Jonathan did today was absolutely spectacular.” — head coach Heath Moenck
Storm Varsity Finishers
13. Ian McKenzie, 25:53.0
15. Jonathan Facio, 26:02.1
27. Trey Thompson, 26:20.8
31. Kyle Hovey, 26:29.8
40. Tyler Combs, 26:57.8
41. Levi Lefebure, 26:58.6
62. Seth Nostrala, 27:38.1
Sadie Timms turned in the Simpson’s first all-conference performance in seven years and the Storm came in sixth at the Iowa Conference Women’s Cross Country Championship from Max Cross Country Course on Saturday.
Courtesy Storm Athletics, click here!
Simpson finished with 148 points, just 14 behind fifth-place Central.
Timms ran the best race of her career, placing 11th in the field of 131 runners. The senior finished in 23:12.3, improving 20 spots from her 31st-place finish a year ago.
The last time a Storm runner earned all-conference honors was in 2010 when Catie Ellingson placed 2nd.
“Our women battled today and they were right in the mix for one of our better showings in recent years. I’m proud of how well they have competed all year and today was no different. It was great to see Sadie capture her first all-conference award. It’s been a goal of hers for many years and she made it happen today.” — head coach Heath Moenck
Storm Varsity Finishers
11. Sadie Timms, 23:12.3
26. Courtney Neuendorf, 24:06.8
39. Emily Buchheit, 24:47.2
43. Shelby Hunemiller, 24:51.5
58. Mary Wood, 25:20.1
61. Lesley Roquet, 25:30.5
71. Rebekah Brainard, 25:50.3
The Storm have a week off before competing at the NCAA Central Region Championship in Northfield, Minn. on Saturday, Nov. 11.