November 13, 2007

Men's Cross Country Falls Just Short of National Berth at NCAA Regional Championship

Nov. 10, 2007

NEW LONDON, Conn. - MIT men's cross country fell decisively short in its bid to capture its first NCAA Division III New England Regional Championship, finishing sixth out of 47 teams in a fast-paced 8000-meter circuit on Saturday. The Engineers managed an impressive team delta of 32 seconds between No. 1-5, but missed qualifying for nationals as a team by 13 total points.

MIT, which extended its streak of top seven finishes at the NCAA Regional to nine years, started out well for the Cardinal and Gray as the Engineers featured seven runners in the top 25 midway through the race. A combination of challenges, including hamstring cramps endured by speedster Yermie Cohen and an unfortunate series of knock-downs against junior star Jake Ruzevick, knocked MIT from its strong position early in the race.

Senior Joseph Roy-Mayhew, who worked his way toward the top group by the four-mile mark, enjoyed the best race of the day for the Engineers and finished 18th overall with a time of 25:15. Ruzevick closed just back in 20th at 25:18.

Junior Trevor Rundell finished 34th overall after crossing the line in 25:34, while sophomore Hemagiri Arumugum (43rd) and Cohen (48th) rounded out the MIT scoring.

MIT did improve on last year's seventh-place finish as a team however the Engineers had enjoyed great success all season and had defeated four of the five teams in front of them earlier in the year. MIT loses just three of its top 12 for the 2008 campaign including one among the top five. With Ruzevick expected to quickly rebound and compete for an individual title at next year's event, MIT figures to once again be in the mix for a berth to the NCAA Championships.