Mills, Hoyt Earn Major LEC Honors
NORTH DARTMOUTH, Mass. – The Little East Conference office announced its annual men’s and women’s cross country major awards program this afternoon after a vote by the conference’s head coaches. Keene State College senior’s Kevin Hoyt (Newtown, Conn.) and Paige Mills (Keene, N.H.) were named the male and female Runners of the Year respectively.
Mills is making her third consecutive appearance as the top female runner in the conference circuit. The Keene, N.H. product continues the impressive line of women’s cross country award winners as a member of the Keene State squad has won the prestigious award in each of the five years it has been awarded. Mills became just the third women’s runner in Owl history to earn All-America honors multiple times in her career. She covered the 6K NCAA Division III Championship course at the Lake Breese Golf Club in Winneconne, Wis. in a season-best time of 21 minutes, 26 seconds to place 17th overall. Mills secured an at-large berth in the national championship meet by placing 12th (21:47) at the NCAA Division III New England Regional on Nov. 12. Two weeks earlier, she raced to her second-straight Little East individual title, crossing the finish line in 18 minutes and two seconds. It was the fourth fastest individual time in the history of the conference meet. She also captured the Bowdoin College Invitational (21:45.29). Mills was named as the conference’s top weekly performer three times on the campaign.
Hoyt becomes just the second male harrier in program history to earn the prestigious top runner award, joining Eric MacKnight (2010). Hoyt covered the 8K Lake Breeze Golf Club course in a time of 24 minutes, 56 seconds to place 46th overall. He earned an at-large berth into the national championship field with his performance at the NCAA Division III New England Regional. Hoyt turned in a top-10 result, when he crossed the finish line on the home course of Bowdoin College in 25 minutes, 2 seconds to place ninth overall. He tuned up for the regional championship by capturing the New England Alliance and Little East Championship at UMass Dartmouth. Hoyt covered the rain-soaked 8K course in a season-best time of 24 minutes, 50 seconds to earn All-New England Alliance and All-Little East honors. He also won the Keene State Alumni Invitational. Hoyt was selected as the top male weekly runner four times on the campaign.