NIACC men ranked 17th in first poll

NIACC's Gavin Connell runs at the NJCAA Region XI time trial in August in Davenport.
NIACC's Gavin Connell runs at the NJCAA Region XI time trial in August in Davenport.

MASON CITY - The NIACC men's cross country team is tied for No. 17 in the initial USTFCCA NJCAA Divison I poll released Wednesday.

Iowa Central is ranked No. 2, Hawkeye CC is No. 12, Indian Hills is No. 20 and Southwestern is No. 25.

The NIACC men were ranked in all five USTFCCA polls last season. The Trojans were ranked as high as sixth in the initial poll in 2017 and placed 18th at the national meet.

The NIACC men claimed the Grand View Viking Invitational with 34 points last Friday at Southeast Polk High School.

NIACC sophomore Abdiaziz Wako was the individual champion of the 8-kilometer race in a personal-best time of 27 minutes, 41 seconds. The Grand View meet was the first time the Trojans have competed in an 8K race this season.

Other counting scores for the Trojans were Gavin Connell (sixth in 28:53), Daniel Hennigar (seventh in 29:07), Sam Pedelty (10th in 29:20) and Evan Wilson (14th in 29:38).

Also for NIACC, Grant Dieken was 18th in 30:27, Isaac Branstad was 19th in 30:30 and Zane Miller was 24th in 31:02.

NIACC returns to action Sept. 22 at the University of Arkansas Chile Pepper in Fayetteville, Ark.

USTFCCA NJCAA Division I men's poll

Central Arizona, Iowa Central, Cloud County CC, El Paso CC, Hutchinson CC, South Plains, Allen CC, Trinidad State JC, Southern Idaho, Louisburg, Lansing CC, Hawkeye CC, Colby CC, Ranger, Waubonsee CC, Cowley, NIACC, Mesa CC, Grand Rapids CC, Indian Hills CC, Pima CC, Dodge City CC, Meridan CC, Highland (Kan.) CC, Southwestern.