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Rob Spies named NJCAA First Team All-American

Sophomore Robert Spies has been named an NJCAA Division III First Team All-American. Contrary to other sports there is no arbitration involved in selecting runners for cross country All-American teams. The best runners earn their honor as they are crowned solely on their performance during the National Championship race. Rob made sure he left no doubt as he finished 5th overall, out of 203 total runners, at the National Championships with a time of 26:38 for the 8K run. The North Hunterdon High School graduate was in familiar territory as he was named an Honorable Mention All-American during his freshman season. A year ago Rob ran at Nationals as an individual runner. However, this year RVCC's entire men's team made the trip to Holyoke Community College in Springfield Massachusetts to compete for the overall championship. The men had a great showing and placed 6th out of 29 total teams. Rob started the season off on the right foot and just kept getting better and better as the year progressed. At Ramapo's season opening invitational Rob finished 28th out of 92 total runners, 2nd among two year athletes, with a time of 17:36 for the 3.1-mile sprint. Competing and succeeding against 4-year Division II and III schools proved to be inspirational for Rob as he went on to place 1st overall at his next race. He finished the Harrisburg Area CC 8K with a time of 29:05 coming in sixteen seconds before his fellow teammate Jake Thoden who took 2nd. A few weeks after at Brookdale's Jersey Blues Invitational Rob finished 2nd overall leading his team to their second team victory on the year. This victory boosted RVCC to a #4 overall National Ranking and made them favorites to win the Region XIX tournament only a week later. The #4 overall rank was the highest national ranking any team in RVCC's history has ever received, and the following week in Regionals the team proved they were worthy. At White Clay Creek in Newark, Delaware Rob finished 2nd overall with a time of 28:17. Rob's outstanding performance, coupled with great showings by his teammates, earned RVCC's Men's Cross Country Team its first ever Region XIX Championship. This is the first region championship for the Lions since the men's soccer team won it all in 2000. Congratulations Rob on a fantastic season and wonderful career! Thank you for your hard work, for representing RVCC to the fullest, and for the legacy you've left!