Saint Louis junior Manuel De Backer competed in the U23 men's division of the SPAR European Cross Country Championships, held Sunday in Samorin, Slovakia, on Sunday.

De Backer had a strong showing at the event, placing 36th with a time of 25:30. De Backer grew up in Belgium but is a native of the Netherlands, the country he represented this weekend at the European Championships.

It was a successful cross country season for De Backer. In October, he became the first Billiken in school history to capture a men's conference cross country title when he won the A-10 Championship in Leesburg, Virginia.