Alverson Takes First Place In Third Annual Freed Speed Open
"Alverson finished in first place Saturday, setting an 8K course record with a time of 26:34"

Alverson Takes First Place In Third Annual Freed Speed Open

Sun, Sep. 10, 2017 - [Cross Country]

Matt Barker, Sports Information Director

HENDERSON, Tenn. - Seven teams arrived on the campus of Freed-Hardeman University Saturday for the third annual Freed Speed Open, which saw Sophomore runner Tyler Alverson dominate the competition in the men's race to take home first place honors.

Coming off an impressive showing in the Brooks Memphis Twilight Classic last week, Alverson continued the momentum Saturday and finished the 8K (5 mile) race with a time of 26:34, setting a new course record in the process. Alverson finished nearly a minute ahead of second place finisher Joel Barlow of Cumberland University, who finished with a time of 27:29.

"Tyler is running really well right now," said Derrick Spradlin, head coach for the FHU Cross Country teams. "For it being the beginning of the year, his pace at Twilight and Freed Speed show that he's picking up right where he left off at the end of track season. If he can keep getting just a little faster each time and keep increasing the distance he can maintain that pace he will be looking good when November comes around."

Rounding out the scoring on the men's team in order were Adam Dunlap, Tristan Ray, Dillon Tucker and Blaine McKinney, who secured spots 17-20 on the leaderboard after finishing within 13 seconds of each other from Dunlap's 29:41 to McKinney's 29:54.

Freed-Hardeman's men's team finished in fourth place behind Cumberland University, Blue Mountain College and Bethel University. Cumberland led the way with six runners finishing in the top 15 including a second place finish by Joel Bartow and third place finish by Jerry Rojas. 

On the women's side, the top five finishers for FHU in the 5K race included Tori Murray
 (23:01), Madelyn Miskelly (23:50), Libby Elliott (24:24), Jade Ford (25:42) and Anna Peters (25:58).

Freed-Hardeman's women's team finished third place in the event behind Blue Mountain College and Cumberland University. Blue Mountain led the way on the women's side, as they had four runners place in the Top 5, led by Margaret Hamilton who finished in first place overall with a time of 19:15.

Spradlin said he was satisfied with the reception of the Freed Speed Open in just its third year.

"This year's Freed Speed Open event had the highest number of runners since we first held the event in 2015," he said. "We had about 115 runners from 12 high schools and 105 runners from eight colleges, including FHU. Of the three previous races we've hosted, two have been rainy, but Saturday we had perfect weather, which really helps the turnout from all of the participating schools."

UP NEXT: The Freed-Hardeman Cross Country are back in action Saturday, September 30th, as they make the trip to Louisville, Ky. to compete in the Greater Louisville Cross Country Classic.