Men’s, women’s cross country each finish third

Andrew Gordon

The cross country teams placed third in the Mid-Atlantic Regional at Princeton University on Nov. 15. Each of the Wildcat squads had four runners named to the All-Mid-Atlantic Region Team with their top 25 finishes.

The Villanova women, ranked No. 5, faced tough competition from No. 4 ranked Princeton and West Virginia, a school with a traditionally strong cross country program.

The women’s team, which has had an impressive season thus far, continued the trend as senior Frances Koons placed first overall in the race. Koons’ performance helped bring the ‘Cats to within eight points of the top two teams, West Virginia and Princeton. The Mountaineers and Tigers both finished with 51 points, compared to the Wildcats’ 59.

Koons won the 6K competition in a time of 21:11, four seconds faster than the nearest contender. Freshman Bogdana Mimic took fifth overall, clocking in at 21:33. Along with Koons and Mimic, two other Wildcats claimed a spot on the All-Mid-Atlantic Region Team by finishing in the top 25. Sophomore Callie Hogan, placing 11th with a time of 21:53, and junior Kaitlyn Tallman finishing 13th in an even 22 minutes, rounded out the Villanova representatives on the regional team.

Also adding to the impressive showing from the Wildcats were sophomores Sarah Morrison and Ali Smith and senior Ellen Dougherty, who placed 29th, 35th and 47th, respectively, in a field of 191 competitors.

The men’s team had similar results in their 10K race an hour after the women’s competition. Sophomore Hugo Beamish led the effort, and the Wildcat men placed third overall, scoring 84 points, which was only beaten by Penn State’s 73 points and Georgetown’s 27.

Beamish ran to a second-place finish in 31:37. He finished one second behind the winner from Georgetown and maintained a 5:06 mile pace. The sophomore was named to the All-Mid-Atlanitc Region Team.

Also cracking the top 25 for the ‘Cats and earning All-Region accolades were sophomores Ben Guest (16th) and Keith Capecci (18th) along with junior Daniel Lewis (19th). Proving the depth of this men’s team, senior Steven Curley placed 29th while freshmen Carl Mackenzie and Chris Williams placed 70th and 78th, respectively.

This Mid-Atlantic Regional race is reflective of the successful season that the ‘Cats have posted all season. This year, the women’s team has climbed to a No. 5 ranking in the country and No. 2 in the Mid-Atlantic Regional. The men’s team is the highest vote-getter just outside the USTFCCCA national poll.

The postseason fates of both squads was determined this past weeked after the strong team performances at Princeton. The men’s and women’s team each recieving bids to the NCAA Championships. The championships are scheduled to be held on Nov. 24 in Terre Haute, Ind.