Cross Country: Merrimack Women Finish Sixth, Men Eighth at NCAA Regionals

HOPKINTON, N.H. – Running in a 28-team field against teams from all over the region, the Merrimack College women’s cross country team posted a sixth-place finish in the 6k race at the NCAA East Regional Championships in Hopkinton, New Hampshire on Saturday.

Led by All-East Region performances from juniors Christian Gentile (Melrose, Mass.) and Keith Steinbrecher (Wading River, N.Y.), the Merrimack College men’s cross country team ran its way to an eighth-place finish out of 23 teams at the NCAA East Regional Championships.

The Basics
Results: Merrimack W
 – (6th/28)
Top Finisher:
 Katherine Ferrara (32nd/191 – 23:07)
 Hopkinton Fairgrounds | Hopkinton, N.H.

Results: Merrimack M – (8th/23)
Top Finisher:
 Christian Gentile (23rd/169 – 32:23)
 Hopkinton Fairgrounds | Hopkinton, N.H.

What They Said
Head coach Chris Cameron, “I’m pleased with how today went going against the top teams from around the largest region in the country in the East Region. It was great to see the team improve their finish from last season, and the team’s average time of 23:32 was good to see as well.”

Head coach Chris Cameron, “Overall I was very pleased with how we ran, we had 175 points which normally can get you in the top-five teams. So we ran well, but the region was very strong this year. The team’s average time was 32:55 in the 10k, which is one of our best ever. It was a great season and it was even better to end it on such a high note.”

How It Happened

  • For the second time in in six races this season and her career, freshman Katherine Ferrara (Norfolk, Mass.) posted the top-finish for the Warriors at the regional championship on Saturday, posting a 32nd-place finish out of 191 runners with a time of 23:07. She also posted the best time for her squad at the New England Championships.
  • Sophomores Sophie Gorton (Plymouth, Mass.) and Tia Foglietta (Lynn, Mass.) were joined by junior Kylie Reardon (Billerica, Mass.) in displaying the Warriors pack-running mentality. Gorton and Foglietta finished 51st and 52nd with times of 23:32 and 23:34, respectively, while Reardon was close behind in 55th at a time of 23:39.
  • Senior captain Claire Aalerud (Winchester, Mass.) helped the Warriors improve their finish at the NCAA East Regional Championships from the 2015 season, finishing 63rdin the 191-runner field at a time of 23:48.
  • Freshman Ariel Vaillancourt (Auburn, N.H.) and junior Maddie Mercado (Palenville, N.Y.) each cracked the top-100 while rounding out the Warriors squad, as Vaillancourt finished 83rd with a time of 24:18, while Mercado posted a 91st-place finish at 24:35.
  • Out of 169 runners at the regional championship on Saturday morning, Gentile and Steinbrecher would finish 23rd and 24th with times of 32:23 and 32:26, respectively. Their impressive finishes in the 10k race within the top-25 at the meet would earn them each All-East Region honors for the first time in each of their careers.
  • Senior captain Phil Harris (Plymouth, Mass.) joined Gentile and Steinbrecher in the top-30 of the race, posting a 29th-place finish with a time of 32:44 to help the Warriors’ cause in the final race of his career.
  • Fellow seniors TJ Curran (Chelmsford, Mass.) and James Wegman (Sandwich, Mass.) each posted quality times at the Hopkinton Fairgrounds, with Curran cracking the top-50 with a 49th-place finish at a time of 33:29. Wegman finish 61st out of the 169 runners in the meet, posting a time of 33:54.
  • Junior Niall Coughlin (Castleton, N.Y.) also cracked the top-50, finishing right behind Curran in 50that a time of 33:31. Sophomore John Sava (West Newton, Mass.) would round the Warriors out with a 69th-place finish at a time of 34:16.
About Mike McMahon 6221 Articles
Mike McMahon is in his 13th year covering Merrimack College for The Eagle Tribune and is the founder and managing editor of The Mack Report. Mike also serves on staff as a senior writer at College Hockey News. Follow him on Twitter @MikeMcMahonCHN

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