Spartanburg, S.C.- SMC Pioneer Men’s and Women's team was host to the 2019 NJCAA Region X Cross Country Championship. The event was held at Milliken Arboretum in Spartanburg, SC on Oct. 26th.
The women’s 5k race started at 9:30am and the SMC women’s team lead the whole race from the start. Shelby Hilt went to the front and did not look back. She finished as the race winner and earned Runner of the Year Award. Angelica Gonzalez finished 2nd for the team while earning 2nd place overall. Louisburg College posted the 3rd and 5th spots with strong performances from Adanna Thomas and Alana Morgan. Ashely Blanton continued to stay consistent in her times this season and grabbed the 4th overall spot. Amari Harrison and Tori Edwards both had great solid performances. The women’s team finished 1st overall and were crowned Region X Team Champions.
The men’s race kicked off at 10:15am. Pioneer Nigel Dos Santos went out front to lead the first portion of the race but fell slightly off to finish 2nd overall to Louisburg’s Dennis McCheskey. SMC earned the 5th and 6th overall place with an outstanding showing from Michael Twigg II and Shawn Hamilton. Andrew Scruggs and Brinton Leidy rounded out the top five for the men’s team. Despite a solid effort from the men’s team, Louisburg took home the Region X Championship.
Women’s All-Region Performers: Shelby Hilt, Angelica Gonzalez, Ashely Blanton, and Amari Harrison
Men’s All-Region Performers: Nigel Dos Sontas, Michael Twigg II, Shawn Hamilton
NJCAA Region X Championship
Men's 8K and Women's 5K
Oct. 26th, 2019
“It was a good race for all the teams present today. This team is mostly freshmen who are just now getting introduced to championship college events. There is a lot at stake and this team earned some great experience today. Their work during the season was on full display. I tell all my athletes; sport is nothing more than discipline. We have hard workers on this team who are the anchors and although I am happy about the awards we earned, I am most excited about the direction of this program.” said Ken Roach
Looking ahead, the Women's Cross Country team will travel to Albuquerque, New Mexico for the NJCAA National CC Championship on Nov 9th. Followed by a trip to El Paso Texas for the NJCAA Half Marathon Nationals on Nov 23th.