Raider Hunt is Rookie of the Year

Raider Hayden Hunt is PSAC’s 2021 Men’s Cross Country Rookie of the Year. He earned All-Region and All-PSAC First Team honors in 2021

Raider Hunt
Raider Hayden Hunt

The 2021 Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC) named Shippensburg University’s Hunt (Shippensburg, Pa./Shippensburg Area) the Men’s Cross Country Rookie of the Year on Thursday afternoon.

Hunt was a two-time PSAC Men’s Cross Country Athlete of the Week who served as the team’s No. 1 scoring runner in all four of the team’s races leading up to the conference championships. His performances included a race win at the Dickinson Short Invitational (4K) and Top 5 finishes at Kutztown and on the home course in the season opener.

The league’s head coaches conduct the voting.

Hunt is a 2021 NCAA Division II National Championships qualifier who earned U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) All-Atlantic Region honors and All-PSAC First Team honors. He placed 10th at the regional championships in a 10K race and fifth at the conference championships in an 8K race.

For the 2021 awards season, the league issued a Rookie of the Year instead of a “Freshman of the Year” to account for individuals such as Hunt who debuted during the pandemic-affected 2020 season (held in February-March 2021). Hunt placed 12th at the 2020 PSAC Championships held in March of this year and served as the team’s No. 3 runner in all three of the team’s races.

Hunt is the fourth Raider to be named the PSAC Men’s Cross Country Rookie/Freshman of the Year. He joins Nate Kaplon (2018), Dom Stroh (2015) and Stephen Schelander (2008). The award was first issued in 2004. Hunt and Schelander are Shippensburg, Pa. natives.

READ: SU sports: Raiders hockey star recognized nationally