Nov. 9, 2012
WASHINGTON - With a well-executed pack running strategy, the men's cross country team captured the Mid-Atlantic Regional title today at the Blue-White Golf Courses in University Park, Pa., hosted by Penn State University. With 56 points, the Hoyas edged out BIG EAST foe Villanova by just one point to capture their eighth Mid-Atlantic title in the last nine years. The Georgetown women finished second as just two points separated the Hoyas from the host Nittany Lions as Penn State won the championship with 61 points to Georgetown's 63.
The men capitalized on excellent pack running with a spread of just seven seconds separating the first and last point scorers for the Blue & Gray, with GU runners finishing eighth, ninth, 11th, 13th and 15th. Georgetown was the only team with a spread under seven second and one of just three teams that kept it under one minute with Villanova (20 seconds) and Princeton (34 seconds) on the list.
"We ran a great team race," Men's Distance Coach Brandon Bonsey said. "With eight seconds separating the top six runners, that's not something you see every day and I think our guys did a great job. Especially guys like Mark Dennin and Ayalew Taye who have not run much this year - they ran great today and really played the role that a senior should play on this team."
Andrew Springer (Westerly, R.I./Westerly) and All-American Mark Dennin (Gilbertsville, Pa./Boyertown) both timed in officially at 30:43 over the 10-kilometer race with Springer edging out Dennin for eighth place. Next to place for the Hoyas was Miles Schoedler (Ocean View, N.J./Ocean View) who finished 11th with a time of 30:46. The trio paced 4:57 for the race.
Ayalew Taye (Portland, Maine/Cushing Academy) was the fourth point scorer for Georgetown with a 13th-place performance of 30:49 (4:58 pace) while freshman Darren Fahy (Carlsbad, Calif./La Costa Canyon) was the final point scorer for the Hoyas at 30:51 for 17th place (4:58 pace). Fahy, a true freshman, recorded the second-fastest time accredited to a runner in his first season with Villanova's Jordan Williamsz ahead of him in fourth place (30:36 / 4:56 pace).
The men showcased considerable depth today as well as excellent team training. Had one runner from the top five been out of the race, the Hoyas could still maintain a spread under 10 seconds with Ben Furcht (Ardmore, Pa./Lower Merion) running 30:51 (4:58 pace) to finish 17th overall. The final GU runner was Collin Leibold (Falls Church, Va./Gonzaga) in 67th place with a time of 32:07 (5:10 pace).
Springer, Dennin, Schoedler, Taye, Fahy and Furcht all received All-Mid-Atlantic honors for finishing among the top 25.
"We wanted to be an automatic qualifier for national and we accomplished that so it was a good day," Bonsey continued.
The Hoyas led on the men's side with 56 points followed by Villanova (57), Princeton (61), American (145), Penn State (147), Navy (179), Saint Joseph's (Pa.) (221), Lehigh (254), Duquesne (288), Penn (289), La Salle (295), Temple (307), Bucknell (321), UMBC (357), Rider (404), Marshall (439), Pittsburgh (474), New Jersey Institute (527), Monmouth (564), George Washington (595), Robert Morris (669), Seton Hall (671), Lafayette (683), St. Francis (Pa.) (691), and Loyola (Md.) (740).
Just as the men did, the women were able to maintain the smallest spread with 37 seconds separating the five point scorers today. Georgetown, with 63 points, was narrowly edged out of first place by the Nittany Lions (61 points) as the Hoyas had runners place fifth, 11th, 13th, 16th and 18th over the six-kilometer race.
All-American Madeline Chambers (Rocky River, Ohio/Magnificat) led the Hoyas with a fifth-place finish with a time of 20:32 (5:30 pace). Kirsten Kasper (North Andover, Mass./North Andover) finished 11th overall with a time of 20:49 (5:35 pace) with Katrina Coogan (Exeter, N.H./Phillips Exeter Academy) right behind her in 13th place (20:52/5:35 pace).
All-Americans Rachel Schneider (Dover, N.H./St. Thomas Aquinas) and Emily Jones (Harvard, Mass./Bromfield) were the fourth and fifth point scorers for the Blue & Gray with 16th-place (21:08/5:40 pace) and 18th-place (21:09/5:40 pace) performances, respectively.
The women maintained the pack through the first kilometer but by three kilometers in, Chambers had pulled ahead into a lead pack with the remainder of the field staying together.
Also competing for the GU women were freshman Samantha Nadel (Glen Head, N.Y./North Shore) in 32nd place (21:41/5:49 pace) and Annamarie Maag (Lake Oswego, Ore./Jesuit Prep) in 59th place (22:11/5:57 pace).
Penn State led the women's 31-team field with 61 points followed by Georgetown (63), Villanova (96), Princeton (101), West Virginia (111), La Salle (113), Navy (202), Penn (297), Duquesne (308), Delaware (340), Saint Joseph's (Pa.) (343), Buckenll (368), Maryland (419), Loyola (Md.) (451), Lehigh (457), Rutgers (460), Rider (478), Pittsburgh (501), Marshall (531), Monmouth (590), George Washington (593), Lafayette (650, Temple (670, Towson (670, Robert Morris (694), UMBC (736), Seton Hall (762), New Jersey Institute (791), St. Francis (Pa.) (797), Maryland-Eastern Shore (847) and Delaware State (934).
Both teams qualify for the NCAA Championships and head back to Louisville, Ky., at the E.P. "Tom" Sawyer State Park, hosted by the University of Louisville. The meet will take place on Saturday, November 17 as the Hoyas re-visit the course that they previewed at the Pre-National Invitational, a precursor to the NCAA Championships, back in October.