Boxers earn first national ranking

Just three-and-a-half years after Pacific University reinstated its football program, the Boxers can boast about a top-25 team.

Following a 68-28 victory over Lewis & Clark on Saturday that improved Pacific’s record to 7-1, the Boxers emerged as the No. 25 team on this week’s American Football Coaches Association Division III Coaches Poll, receiving 48 votes from the panel of 42 coaches.

“This is a testament to the hard work of the players, the coaches and the entire university community who committed four seasons ago to beginning a program from the ground up,” Pacific head coach Keith Buckley said. “While we are proud of this distinction and the effort put in to be recognized in the Top 25, we know that we still have a lot to prove in these final two weeks of the season.”

The Boxers posted a near-record rushing performance against the Pioneers on Saturday, finishing with 386 yards and seven touchdowns. Gunther Schultze led the way with 126 yards and two TDs on 13 carries, while Deven McKinney, T.C. Campbell, Kamana Pimental, Bobby Ladiges and Bronson Baretto each contributed 40 yards or more on the ground.

Pacific is back in action this Saturday with a road game against Willamette. Kickoff is scheduled for 1:30 p.m.

Shipley takes 2nd at NWC meet

Tyler Shipley posted the highest finish for a Pacific men’s cross-country runner in 37 years Saturday, placing second to lead the Boxers at the Northwest Conference Championships, held at the Downriver Golf Course in Spokane.

Shipley covered the 8,000-meter course in 25 minutes, 1.60 seconds to finish just behind Willamette’s Parker Bennett, who won the race in 24:30.62. Shipley, a sophomore from Forest Grove, was named First Team All-Northwest Conference based on his finish. He is the highest Pacific men’s placer at the NWC Championships since Roger Hansen won the meet in 1976.

Shipley led the Pacific men to an eighth-place team finish with 210 points. The Boxers’ young women’s team placed ninth with 255 points.

Sidney Davis was Pacific’s top women’s runner, finishing just two seconds off her season best with a time of 23:55.43 to place 42nd. Olivia Masek-McIntosh, another Forest Grove High School graduate, was the Boxers’ No. 2 runner, placing 49th in a season-best time of 24:13.60.

Willamette swept both the team and individual honors. The Bearcat men repeated as champions with a score of 49 points behind Bennett’s second straight title. The Willamette women ended Lewis & Clark’s three-year run as champion with 37 points. Michaela Freeby was the individual champion with a time of 21:42.19.

Pacific will next compete at the NCAA Division III West Regional Championships, which will be held on Nov. 16 in Claremont, Calif.