EASTON, Mass. - Both Saint Michael's College cross country squads placed 12th among 15 institutions during the Northeast-10 Conference Championship on Saturday at the campus of Stonehill College, where the meet occurred for the first time since 2010. The men were only nine points shy of the top 10.
Thanks to scoring 317 points, the Purple Knight men trailed 11th-place The College of Saint Rose by just five points and 10th-place Southern Connecticut State University by nine. American International College, which was 19th in the latest U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) national poll, won with 27 points, and the hosts, who are receiving a national vote, were second at 74. Each of the remaining top eight were also ranked in the latest USTFCCCA East Region poll.
Senior Ross Henry (Chagrin Falls, Ohio/Kenston) took 55th during the 8K in a time of 27:23, while first-year Kevin Jeter (Eden Prairie, Minn./Eden Prairie) was 58th at 27:37. Senior Torin La Liberte (Madison, N.H./Kennett), who competed at NE-10s each of his four years, took 82nd by crossing the finish line in 28:24. Sophomore David Baird (Higganum, Conn./Haddam-Killingworth) finished at 29:18, while classmate Matthew Logue (Watertown, Conn./The Gunnery) clocked in at 29:45.
First-year Tim DeCosta (Barnstable, Mass./Barnstable) and sophomore Liam Schmelzle (Saint Louis Park, Minn./Saint Louis Park) finished in 30:28 and 30:50, respectively, to round out the team's top seven. Three additional seniors took part in the race, with Cody Boissoneault (Saint Albans, Vt./BFA-Saint Albans), who appeared at his fourth NE-10 Championship, joining Cody Putnam (Alburgh, Vt./BFA-Saint Albans) and Bryce Turner (Wayland, Mass./Wayland).
The Saint Michael's women scored 310 points to move up three places from last year and edge out 13th-place University of New Haven by eight points. Stonehill, which is ranked 13th in the nation, won with 40 points. Each of the top four teams were at least regionally ranked, while the Purple Knights ended up only one place short of regionally-ranked Southern New Hampshire University.
First-year Abby French (Nashua, N.H./Academy of Notre Dame) paced the Purple Knights for the fifth time in as many races this fall by taking 50th in 24:32 during the 6K. Sophomore Emily Kopacz (Windsor, Conn./Windsor) was 83rd in 25:34, leading a close pack of Purple and Gold harriers. Senior Alison Bourgeois (Georgia, Vt./BFA-Saint Albans) took 84th at 25:41, junior Roxy Withers (Hampden, Maine/Hampden Academy) claimed 85th by crossing the finish line in 25:44, and sophomore Riley Mitiguy (Shelburne, Vt./Rice Memorial) nabbed 87th at 25:46. Kopacz and Mitiguy were making their NE-10 Championship debuts, while Bourgeois competed in her fourth.
Senior Katrina Wiesner (Bow, N.H./Bow) recorded a personal-record 26:30 at her fourth NE-10 meet, and classmate Julia Snyder (Fairfax, Vt./BFA-Fairfax) clocked in at 26:50, as the duo rounded out the team's top seven. Senior Molly Roush (Rouses Point, N.Y./Northeastern Clinton Central School) also appeared at the meet for Saint Michael's.
The top seven runners from each Purple Knight squad head to the NCAA East Regional Championship on Nov. 5 at the Hopkinton State Fairgrounds in Contoocook, N.H. The men begin at 11 a.m. before the women follow at 12:15 p.m.