Luis Pérez Lerchundi
Goshen College added two new athletes to next year’s roster for the track and field team, as well as the cross-country program. Nathaniel Roberts, of Sprague High School in Oregon, and Alex Oberlin, of Fairfield High School in Goshen, have recently signed their national letter of intents.
Maple Leafs’ Coach Doug Yoder said, “These two guys are my top recruits for the upcoming year. They will provide immediate impact to our programs.”
Roberts is a six-time Junior Olympic national champion in the race walk. Roberts will join the Goshen College’s race-walking program, which has earned 26 All-American honors in the past eight years. Roberts has a 10,000-meter personal best of 47:43.
Roberts will also be important in the cross country program after participating three times in the Oregon state championships, and he also won two district titles in cross country. His personal best is 15:55 in the five kilometers event. Roberts has participated in the Borderclash, an event featuring the best runners from Oregon and Washington.
Finally, Roberts has a 3,000-meter district title on his track and field career, where his personal best time in the event is 9:05. Roberts plans to major in broadcasting.
The local athlete, Oberlin will join the Maple Leafs program. Oberlin is a four-time cross-country all conference honoree for the Fairfield Falcons. Oberlin was also named the team’s MVP during his senior season and has been given six coaches awards during his career. His personal best in the 5,000-meters event is 16:37.
On the track, Oberlin has earned all-conference honors twice in the two mile event, while he was also part of an all-league 4×800 relay team for Fairfield High School. Some of his personal bests 4:37 in the mile, 2:04 in the 800, and 10:17 in the two mile. Oberlin plans to major in exercise science and get into physical therapy.
Coach Yoder expects that with the addition of the two signed recruits and the others that will likely sign, we will be a better team than they were this past season.
“We expect to win the Crossroads League Championship in cross country and will qualify as a team for the NAIA National Championships,” he said. “In track we will again be a better overall team and will have more All-Americans coming out of the addition of our recruiting efforts.”
Finally, Coach Yoder said that there are more recruits coming to join the athletics program.
“I do have several more recruits that I am still talking to,” he said. “We have had 4 female athletes commit to GC and several others waiting to make their final decisions.”
His goal is to keep improving for the next year.
He said, “I am optimistic that we will improve all of our teams over this year’s performances. We will keep doing what we have been doing, working hard and keeping a positive attitude towards our athletic and academic goals.”