Life in the Fast Lane

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Ryan Hopkins '12

Head coach Gary Andrew’s Wildcats are getting faster.
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By Mark Brumbaugh

When Lance Harden ’09 graduated with the fastest 8K cross-country time in Davidson’s history at 24:44, it was a record to beat. Now, a 24:27 time is necessary just to rank 10th.

Ryan Hopkins ’12 graduated holding eight of the school’s top 10 cross-country performances, including the 8K record of 23:31. Hopkins ran the first eight kilometers of the 10K NCAA Southeast Regional this past season in 24:11, and ultimately finished in a school-record 30:22.

In 2011 Charlie Schmitt ’11 finished the outdoor 5,000-meter run at the Raleigh Relays in 14:27.21 to break Coty Pinckney ’78’s 32-year-old record of 14:33.9. Schmitt held the record for just one year, as Hopkins and Demetrios Pagonis ’13 ran times of 14:12.79 and 14:17.21, respectively, at the 2012 Raleigh Relays.

Hopkins went on to win the Southern Conference Championship in the 5,000- meter, and then he and Pagonis broke his own school record in the 10,000-meter run at the prestigious Penn Relays. Hopkins’s time earned a spot in the NCAA East Regional field, making him the first Davidson runner to qualify strictly on time.

Hopkins may have established himself as Davidson’s best distance runner of alltime this past season, but if recent history is any indication, Pagonis might be able to dispute that claim in his senior season.

Photo Credit: Tim Cowie

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