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An unseasonably hot Saturday morning did not stop the Southwestern Community College men from a solid performance at the Central Dutch Invitational.
Aaron Ward led the No. 19 ranked Spartans with a 25th place finished on the 8k course, crossing the line in 29:30.
Sophomore Rayvonne Brown led the pack of Cassidy Warson, Gage Beers and Ovan Garcia to round out the top five, scoring 27th, 32nd, 35th and 36th respectively.
The men placed fifth overall, ahead of Grand View and Indian Hills Community College.
In her first collegiate 6K, Hannah Murphy crossed the line in 29:07, finishing 41st overall.
Teammates Sarah McKeon and Kristin Klocksiem followed in 55th and 58th respectively.
As a team, the Spartan women are ranked 24th in the nation. It is only the second time in program history the men and women have been ranked in the top 25 at the same time.
Former Spartan Kalli McCann placed 21st overall. She is currently running for Grand View.
The men's and women's cross country teams jumped into the national spotlight by breaking into the NJCAA Division I Top 25 National Polls for September 5, 2013. The men's team was ranked 19th and the women's team came in at 24th. The Spartans will travel to Sugar Grove, IL, this weekend to run in the Waubonsee Chief's Invitational. Go Spartans!
The Southwestern men and women opened their seasons at the 2013 Region XI time trial in Mason City on the North Iowa Area Community College campus.
The men put four in the top 30 and finished fourth as a team behind two teams that finished in the top 25 at the national meet last season. Iowa Central did not run a team at the meet, but did have the individual national champion.
Aaron Ward led the Spartans on the 5k course, crossing the line in 18:08 in 16th place. Sophomore Rayvonne Brown followed placed 24th with a time of 18:42.
Ovan Garcia, a May 2013 graduate of Indianola High School, recently signed a national letter of intent to run for the Spartans’ cross country and track and field programs during the 2013-14 academic year. Garcia specializes in the 3200 meter run and the 1600 meter run.