Back-to-back Iowa Conference champions (2012, 2013)
PELLA-The Central College men’s cross country team slipped to No. 32 in the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) poll.
Central, ranked third in the Central Region, is the only nationally ranked team from the Iowa Conference (Wartburg is receiving votes). The Dutch were No. 7 in the national preseason poll and No. 1 in the region.
The Dutch, competing without top runner Eli Horton (junior, Runnells, Southeast Polk HS), opened the season with a runner-up finish at the Central Dutch Invitational. Austin O’Brien (senior, Bettendorf, Pleasant Valley HS) won the 8K home invitational in 26:19. Horton returned to lead Central at the St. Olaf (Minn.) Invitational last weekend with a 15th-place individual finish as the team finished seventh of 16 teams.
North Central College (Ill.) retains the top spot for the third consecutive week. St. Olaf is the highest ranked team from the Central Region at No. 10, while Carleton College (Minn.), the second ranked team from the region, is No. 29.
The Dutch return to competition on Oct. 4 at the Wis.-Eau Claire Blugold Invitational in Colfax, Wis.