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Herber finishes 64th, Spahr finishes 88th at Nationals

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LAWRENCE, Kan. - Sophomore Tyler Herber and junior Gretchen Spahr represented Huntington University this weekend at the 2013 NAIA Cross Country National Championships at Rim Rock Farm in Lawrence, Kansas.

For Spahr, it marked her third consecutive trip to the national stage. The Huntington native (Huntington North H.S.) crossed the line in 19:09.41 to finish 88th out of 319 runners. She averaged a 6:10.0 mile and finished fourth out of her Crossroads League foes.

As a freshman, Spahr qualified for Nationals as an individual where she clocked in at 19:43 to take 67th place. Last year, she along with her teammates represented the Crossroads League at the National tournament where she enjoyed her highest finish, 47th place in 19:09.

British Columbia was just the third team in the women’s championship 34-year history to begin the season ranked No. 1 and go on to win the team title (with 56 points). Rounding out the top five was College of Idaho with 97 points followed by Biola (174), Lewis-Clark State (189) and Olivet Nazarene (197).

Taylor University earned the league’s automatic bid to Nationals where they finished tenth overall with 270 points.

It was Herber’s first trip to Nationals and it proved to be an impressive outing for the Fremont (Ind.) native. At 64th, he was the highest-finishing area runner. He posted a career-best time of 25:34.65 to register the third best time among other league runners. He averaged a 5:08.8 mile.

Oklahoma City won the men’s title with 77 points followed by Southern Oregon (124), Emmanuel (148), St. Francis (Ill.) (157) and Aquinas (185).

Indiana Wesleyan University represented the Crossroads League at the national meet to finish 21st out of the 32-team field with 556 points.