On Saturday the College’s cross country teams competed in the NCAA Division III Atlantic Regional Championships hosted by SUNY-Geneseo and produced disappointing showings with the women placing 11th of 33 teams and the men bettering them by one spot at 10th place out of 39 programs, meaning neither team has qualified for the National Championships.
“Saturday was not a good day for our team,” said Michelle Wallace, who personally placed eighth overall with a time of 22:15. “We were looking to qualify for Nationals as a team and we just did not pull it off.”
“Our team was definitely prepared for this race,” Wallace said. She personally qualified for the singles National Championship race in Ohio next week. “We knew that we were one of the top teams in the region. Sometimes the race just doesn’t go the way you plan.”
In their final regional races, the seniors stepped up and led the way for the women with Nicole Ullmeyer following Wallace in 36th place finishing the 6,000-meter race with a time of 23:22 and Cathy Goncalves clocking in at 23:51 and taking the 63rd position.
Sophomore Katie Nestor finished in 80th place with a time of 24:13 followed by freshman Rachel Morris at 111th and junior Brittany Erickson at 112th. Morris broke the tape at 24:58.4 and Erickson at 25:00.4.
“It was a little bit disappointing to tell the truth,” said junior captain T.J. Bocchino of his team’s showing. “We were hoping to maybe slip in there in the fifth spot and maybe get a shot at qualifying for nationals, but we did not think we would be as far back as 10th.”
Although Bocchino finished in 24th place with a time of 25:50 and earned a trip to Ohio, he was not happy with his personal performance.
“It was one of my more lackluster performances of the year,” he said. “If I raced like I was capable of, I would have been in the top 10 or 15 in the field.”
Freshman Max Sparsha finished with an impressive time of 26:21 that was good enough for 44th place. Senior Brandon Rodkewitz followed Sparsha in 47th position at 26:26.2. Sophomore Alex Yersak and junior Dennie Waite posted top 100 times and freshman Matt Hernberg and sophomore Kevin Schickling finished back to back at 123 and 124.