OXFORD, Ohio – After pacing the Miami University men’s cross country team through the 2013 season, senior Dave Wing was voted the Ohio Division I Cross Country Runner of the Year, announced the All-Ohio Cross Country Coaches Association Thursday.
Wing was Miami’s top finisher in all seven of this season’s meets, and earned MAC honors five times for his outstanding cross country performances. He finished his cross country career leading the RedHawks at the NCAA Great Lakes Regional Championship Nov. 15, finishing 47th overall in 31:39, half a second faster than his 32:15 time from last season’s regional.
Like the Regional, Wing saved his strongest runs for his final cross country season.
The Naperville, Ill. native opened the 2013 season with a second-place finish at the Dayton Flyer 5K Aug. 31. His 15:39.0 time earned him the honor, MAC Runner of the Week, his first conference award in his career. He earned his second conference honor a week later when he won the 2013 Miami Invitational in 14:55.3.
Wing continued to pace both the Red and White and the conference at the Bluegrass Cross Country Invitational Sept. 14. Competing in his first 8K of the season, Wing raced against athletes from conference foe Akron and nationally ranked teams Oklahoma State and Eastern Kentucky. Wing held his composure against such tough competition, and finished 11th overall in a new career-best 8K time of 24:17.21. With his career-high that helped the RedHawks finish fifth above Akron, Wing earned MAC honors for a third-consecutive week.
His leadership continued to shine at the All-Ohio Championships Oct. 4 when he and senior teammate Matt Marol led the way through a congested 289-runner field. Facing 40 teams, including conference rivals Akron, Kent State, and Bowling Green, Wing was second overall and the first MAC athlete to cross the finish line in 25:03.56. As the No. 1 finisher from Division I schools present at the meet, Wing earned his fourth MAC honor in his career.
Wing was awarded his fifth and final MAC Runner of the Week honor after his notable 8K race at Pre-Nationals Oct. 19. Serving as a final tune-up before the conference meet, the RedHawks raced against 51 regionally and nationally ranked teams, including MAC competitors Akron, Eastern Michigan, and Central Michigan.
Refusing to let the tough racing field intimidate him, Wing was both the MAC’s and Miami’s top finisher, placing 83rd overall in 24:29.65. The RedHawks finished 44th overall, but with Wing’s guidance, Miami was the second MAC team to finish the race behind Central Michigan.
While Pre-Nationals set Wing up for a strong finish at the 2013 MAC Championship, it did not bode well for the team overall. Plagued by several injuries and illnesses, the RedHawks finished sixth out of a nine-team field at the conference meet Nov. 2. Despite the struggle throughout the race, Wing continued to lead his team, coming out as runner-up in 24:54.61 behind Buffalo’s Zachary Ahart.
Although unable to qualify for the NCAA Championship meet, Wing paced the RedHawks at the NCAA Great Lakes Regional Championship, helping his team conclude its 2013 season with a 12th-place finish overall.With his Miami cross country career at an end, Wing will begin his final track and field season as a RedHawk Friday, Feb. 14 at the Hoosier Hills Invitational in Bloomington, Ind.