Sac State cross country All-American set for second season


Nathanael Litwiller 1:Nathanael Litwiller runs at practice to prepare for the next cross country meet.:Steve Turner – State Hornet

AJ Taylor

Cross country runner Nathanael Litwiller is beginning his second season at Sacramento State and he has opened eyes around campus and throughout the nation.


Nathanael, or Nano as his teammates call him, earned the title of Junior All-American while competing in the United States Track and Field Championships in Des Moines, Iowa.


“That’s the highest level in our sport, and he was there competing and he was competitive,” said assistant coach Scott Abbott. “He made the final, he finished sixth place. I think he could’ve been even better than that.”


Litwiller ran against the top runners in the 800-meter event, and placed sixth with a time of 1:50.82.


What truly sets him apart from the rest is not seen on the track.


Litwiller described his experience at the United States Track and Field Championships.


“It was eye-opening in a couple of ways. Some of the guys you meet, they’re really nice,” Litwiller said. “One of them actually seemed genuinely interested in how my season went, so that was cool. But you also got the guys who you see with their head in the clouds, and it makes you realize that it’s just as important to stay humble as it is to stay fit.”


He received offers from both Sac State and UC Berkeley and he admitted he chose Sac State because he felt wanted here.


“I sat down with my parents to make my final decision,” said Litwiller. “We laid out the pros and cons between here and Berkeley and a lot of it was coach Abbott, the comradery between the team and I felt that I was definitely more wanted here.”


After only one season in college Litwiller has already enjoyed his fair share of athletic success and he attributes most of his success, if not all, to his strong faith in Christian Science.


Don’t confuse Christian Science with Scientology, though.


“It’s the same thing as Christianity,” said teammate Cameron Mitchell. “Except they don’t believe in medical practice for health problems, so they don’t take medicine. They don’t see doctors unless its for surgeries or really drastic.”


Litwiller is always the quiet leader in the gym, the silent example on the track and is never one to brag.


“He’s a very humble person,” said teammate Myko Lucas “He’s obviously really good but he never brags about it. He always cheers us on. I’d say he’s a great teammate.”


Litwiller takes his role as a Hornet athlete seriously.


“I give 100 percent effort when I’m out there representing my school and helping out my teammates,” Litwiller said. “It’s a family when you’re out there on the race course and you should treat them like one.”