The Amherst College’s men’s cross-country team came in second at Little Three championships last Saturday, Oct. 17. Hosting bitter rivals Williams and Wesleyan in the 8-kilometer race, the Jeffs fell to the Ephs in a tight contest.
Williams entered the event with a 27-race winning streak in Little Threes, but the Jeffs looked set to pose their best challenge for the title in years. Led by Mohamed Hussein ’18 and senior captain Dan Crowley at the Purple Valley Classic in late September, Amherst had defeated Williams over the 8K distance. With the Jeffs entering ranked second in the USTFCCCA poll and Williams below them in seventh, the purple and white were favored to break the streak.
As expected, Hussein and Williams’ Bijan Mazaheri pulled ahead of the field, challenging each other for the individual crown. At the Purple Valley Invitational, the two battled neck-and-neck until Hussein edged Mazaheri by a second. Hussein repeated the act at home, defeating his Williams counterpart with a time of 25:47.4 to claim the individual crown. The win marks his third first-place finish this year.
Throughout the race, Amherst and Williams’ second through fifth runners ran in a tight pack.
The breakthrough for the Ephs came when their second runner, Ben Decker, made a move to pass Crowley and claim third place. The Amherst senior finished in fourth place with a time of 26:21.9.
Williams’ Peter Hale and Griffin Colaizzi followed in fifth and sixth place, respectively, while Wesleyan’s Taylor Titcomb came in seventh.
Three Amherst runners rounded out the top 10. Craig Nelson ’18 crossed the line in eighth place with a time of 26:39.4, while Raymond Meijer ’17 finished milliseconds behind him in ninth-place with a mark of 26:39.4.
Jeff Seelaus ’16 was the last scoring Jeff to finish, running a time of 26:41.6 to come in tenth place.
With the results, the purple and white amassed a total of 32 points, but the Ephs amassed 27 points to claim a close victory. Wesleyan finished third with 77 points.