XC Teams Look to Rebound at ECACs After Slow Weekend
Issue   |   Wed, 11/06/2013 - 00:59

This past Saturday the Amherst men’s cross country team competed in the NESCAC Championships at Harkness Memorial Park in Waterford, Conn. The Jeffs finished seventh overall at the event.

Williams placed three runners in the top ten and subsequently won the NESCAC title with 51 points. Middlebury took second with 62 points, followed by Tufts in third with 103 points. Trailing these top three teams were Bowdoin (114), Colby (117), Bates (148), Amherst (180), Conn. College (201), Hamilton (234), Wesleyan (258) and Trinity (353).

Paving the way for the Jeffs yet again this season was Dan Crowley ’16. Crowley took 24th overall with a time of 25:36. This season Crowley has been a huge contributor for the Jeffs, finishing as the top finisher in four out of the six events thus far.
KC Fussell ’15 was second on the squad with a 25:43 finishing time and was a second shy of his team-leading time at the championship last year.

Rounding out the top five were Charlie Reighard ’14, Alvaro Morales ’14 and Greg Turissini ’15 finishing in times of 25:56, 26:01, and 26:08 respectively. These times placed these runners in 39th, 41st and 45th.

Raymond Meijer ’17 and Steven Lucey ’17 were the first-year contributors in the race for the Jeffs with respective finishing times of 26:28 and 26:32.

“From a time perspective it went pretty well as most of the guys ran faster times than they have this season which is good. It was a fast course and ideal conditions and the first real opportunity to run quick times,” Coach Erik “Ned” Nedeau said.
The times certainly were quicker as the top individual finisher, Michael LeDuc of Conn. College, completed the race in 24:35, 18 seconds faster than the previous course record.

Coach Nedeau added, “While we ran quickly, I don’t think we were as competitive in the race as we are capable of being … We have been training extremely well … not sure if we needed a little more rest to let the training fully sink in or if the guys got a little panicked when they saw the quick times for the opening mile and backed off … we lost contact with the groups of runners we should have been pushing with.”

The Jeffs plan to sort this out as they prepare to compete in the ECAC Championships at 12 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 9.

The Amherst women’s cross country team competed in the NESCAC Championship this past Saturday at Conn. College. The Jeffs placed eighth out of the eleven competing NESCAC teams.

Middlebury took home the title after placing its seven top runners in the top-12 of the entire field. Behind Middlebury’s 29 points, was Williams with 51 points and Tufts took third with 90 points. Following these top three teams were Bates (138), Hamilton (147), Colby (183), Conn. College (188), Amherst (192), Bowdoin (235), Wesleyan (289) and Trinity (333).

In the field of 126 runners, Williams’ Kaleigh Kenny ’14 set the pace as the top individual finisher with a course record time of 21:20.0. Both the men’s and women’s competitions this weekend set record breaking paces.

Lizzy Briskin ’15 and Catherine Lowdon ’17 led the Jeffs. Briskin finished just sixth tenths of a second before Lowdon (23:01.8) with a time of 23:01.2. Briskin took 40th overall and 36th in respect to team scoring. Last season Briskin placed 14th at this same meet with a time of 22:14.04.

When asked to comment on the day, Briskin said, “We were hoping for a better performance as a team, to help our national standings, but we are looking forward to Regionals in a couple of weeks to beat some of the teams that caught us this past week.”

Briskin and Lowdon have consistently been top finishers for the Jeffs with Lowdon finishing second for Amherst at the Little Three Championship that took place several weeks ago.

Betsy Black ’16 was the third finisher for the Jeffs. Her 23:04.6 finish marked improvement from last year’s event, which she finished in a time of 23:07.52.

Also factoring into the scoring for the Jeffs were Jessie Kaliski ’15 (23:14.4), Caroline Rose ’16 (23:18.4), Savanna Gornisiewicz ’17 (23:20.2) and Lisa Walker ’14 (23:32.5). Gornisiewicz has also been a consistently strong finisher for the Jeffs, finishing first for the team at the Purple Valley Classic and UMass Invitational earlier on this season.

The Jeffs will continue their 2013 campaign this Saturday, Nov. 9 at the ECAC Championships.