Metro men finished 8th and women finished 12th at the South Central Region cross-country championship Nov. 3 at Willis Case Golf Course in Denver.
Because of their finish, sophomore Nick Kadlec and freshman Janelle Lincks will run for Metro in the NCAA Division II championship race Nov. 17 in Joplin, Mo.
Kadlec finished 23rd overall in the 10K race, beating runners from 22 teams, and crossing the line first for the Roadrunners in 33:17, improving his personal best by 36 seconds.
“I was surprised I made it individually,” Kadlec said. “I had a lot of confidence in our team and I am a little disappointed they didn’t make it.”
Last season, Kadlec joined juniors Kellen Fockler and Kirk Harvey at the national championship, where Harvey finished 79th. Kadlec said he was a little surprised that Harvey, who led the Roadrunners all season, is not making the trip with him.
“I was aware of it when I passed him in the last half mile, but I didn’t realize I would put him out of the championship,” Kadlec said. “I train with him and I know that he is a really strong runner. I want to be satisfied with the race — I really want to prove to myself that I deserve to be there.”
Lincks earned her spot in the championship despite her own skepticism.
“I really wasn’t expecting it,” Lincks said. “We have some really strong freshman runners and I thought, maybe we would make it as a team next year.”
Lincks said her strategy for the regional race was to stay in the middle of the pack or the bottom third, but wasn’t able to maintain that the entire time. Her strategy for her first national race is simple.
“I hate it when people pass me, so the biggest thing is not to try to be up front with everybody else,” Lincks said. “But I definitely need to be more aware of my pace.”