PORTLAND, Maine - MIT men's cross country, ranked 16th in the nation in the latest U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) poll, came in third place with 113 points at the New England Division III Championships at the University of Southern Maine on Saturday afternoon, advancing to nationals, that will be held next weekend.
Racing against some of the highest ranked Division III programs in the country, every team there was vying for the two automatic bids to the 2013 NCAA Tournament. Williams College was first with 77 points and Middlebury College finished right behind with 78, while Tech improved on its ninth place finish from last year.
Senior Roy Wedge (Lawrence, Kan.) led the way for MIT with his fifth place finish in the 8k with a time of 24:42.82, just 20 seconds out of first place finisher Michael LeDuc from Connecticut College. Wedge, the New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) Runner of the Year, improved greatly from last year, moving up 24 places and bettering his time by almost 50 seconds. Sophomore Matthew Deyo (Manlius, N.Y.) finished soon after in seventh place with a 24:48.59. Both earned All-New England honors for their performances.
Coming in 25th place was junior Allen Leung (Arcadia, Calif.) with his time of 25:18.93, finishing a tenth of a second ahead of Jeff Hale of Colby College. Freshman Rory Beyer (San Mateo, Calif.), the NEWMAC Rookie of the Year, came in 29th place with his time of 25:21.88 and sophomore Ian Tolan (Binghamton, N.Y.) was 47th in 25:52.58. Rounding out the MIT finishers were juniors Matt Jordan (Matthews, N.C.) and Benji Xie (El Dorado Hills, Calif.) in 70th and 75th with times of 26:15.03 and 26:19.67.
The Engineers will travel to Hanover College in Indiana on Saturday, Nov. 23 for the NCAA Division III Championships that will begin at 11:00 a.m.