Student recreation clubs notch wins

· 3 min read

Student recreation clubs notch wins

Dillon McNeill competes in a cycling race.
Courtesy | CXHairs
Dillon McNeill competes in a cycling race.

This fall, the rumble of spokes and the flash of lycra wasn’t just the average campus soundtrack. It was the sound of the University of Nebraska–Lincoln Cycling Club tearing through miles, all with their sights set on a bigger prize: Nationals.

For club member Dillon McNeill, competing wasn’t just about crossing the finish line; it was about representing Nebraska on a national stage.

“It’s nice to be able to represent Nebraska on a national level in front of all kinds of cycling fans” he said.

On Dec. 7, McNeill was crowned the Men’s Collegiate Club National Champion at the 2023 USA Cycling Cyclocross National Championships in Louisville, Kentucky. He also finished ninth in the Men’s Elite category for CXD Trek.

But nationals wasn’t just a victory lap. It was the culmination of months of dedication.

“What I enjoyed most was the connections that I’ve made with people involved in the club” McNeill said. “I’ve made a lot of new friends through the club that provide a lot of support, company on training rides, and advice. Having people that are interested in the same activity as you make it easier to train and race.”

McNeill’s path to Nationals wasn’t paved with leisurely spins around campus. Between late January and the big race, his wheels logged 12-16 hours a week. He also chased challenging races beyond the Midwest, including the Trek CX Cup in Waterloo, Wisconsin; GoCross in Roanaoke, Virginia; and Kings CX in Cincinnati, Ohio. His commitment, alongside the support of his fellow cyclists, paved the way for victory.

When it comes to sports clubs and why other students should join, McNeill has two compelling reasons — connection and fitness.

“Students should join a sports club to build connections while doing an activity that is good for you” he said.

McNeill joins other club teams/members this semester who’ve excelled at the national and regional level:

  • The Waterski Club secured a third-place team finish at D2 Nationals, while club member Sam Weber was named the overall champion for the second year in a row.

  • Three members of the Sports Officials Association; Austin Tejral, Quinn Huppert, and Ethan Rose, were selected to work the 2023 NIRSA National Flag Football Tournament in Stillwater, Oklahoma, Dec. 18-20.

  • Both the Men’s and Women’s club soccer teams qualified for their regional tournaments, respectively.

  • The Sailing Club was invited to the prestigious GLIOR Chicago Regatta.

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