Round Rock, Texas- Freshman runner Nathaneal Rankin made history today as he becomes the first in school history to win an individual American Southwest Conference title taking home first place in the ASC men's cross country championships Saturday morning.
Rankin, a native of Plano, Texas, topped all other competitors to become the winner with a time of 26:41.6 in the 8K. Rankin also became the ASC Freshman of the Year since he was the top freshman finisher. He is the first freshman to win the race since 2009.
"It was a great experience coming out here to run in the conference championship for the first time," said Rankin. "It was my first race to win so I'm excited about it. I went out there with the strategy of tucking in until three or four miles. After I made my final move, I went hard until the finish. I want to carry this momentum into regionals and hopefully into nationals."
Running in a pack through the first three miles, Rankin made his move late and finished strong down the stretch to capture the title. Ozarks finished fifth as a team.
Rankin and his teammates will now compete in the NCAA III Regional November 11 in Newport News, Va.