Ephs Finish 3rd at ECAC Championships

(l. to r.): Nick Wolf, Todd Ford, Peter Watson, Peter Drews, Brian Kirchner, Steve Mendoza & Max Heninger
(l. to r.): Nick Wolf, Todd Ford, Peter Watson, Peter Drews, Brian Kirchner, Steve Mendoza & Max Heninger

Complete Results

Williamstown, MA
--Williams Men's Cross Country competed at the ECAC Championships on Saturday and sought to defend their streak of 7 consecutive ECAC titles.  The championship meet was held on their home course at Mt. Greylock High School.  It was a beautiful day to run with surrounding snow-capped mountains and cool weather.  Despite hurricane Sandy, the course was in great condition with trails that were really compact, producing relatively quick times.

Todd Ford led the Ephs, and he positioned himself with the leaders for the entire race.  He looked strong throughout and made a tremendous effort the final 800 meters to win the race.  Sam Haney from Tufts edged him in the final straightaway, but Todd still finished second overall in the race with a time of 26:26.  This bodes well not only for the rest of the season but also the future, as he is only a freshman.  Head coach Pete Farwell states, "Todd Ford was tremendous. He proved he can be strong and relaxed over the 8k distance, and have a great kick against veteran runners."
 
Right behind Todd Ford was Peter Drews.  He had an outstanding race, slowly moving up throughout.  He finished 12th overall in a time of 27:06.  It is great to see how he finished the season because he overcame a nagging injury that lingered for most of the season.

Behind Todd and Peter, there was a pack of Williams men that rounded out the top 5.  Nick Wolf had a stellar race.  He got out quickly and still managed to move up in the last two miles of the race.  He was the third man for the Ephs running 27:22.   Senior Steve Mendoza capped his cross country career in this final race.  He raced to the best of his abilities, knowing that it would be the last time he represents Williams cross country.  He finished 24th overall and was the 4th man for Williams in a time of 27:31.  Williams junior Max Heninger rounded out the top 5 with a time of 27:32.  He managed to progressively pick it up and looked really strong the last 2 miles.  His performance today far exceeded his expectations, and it is great to see a breakout performance like his, especially as he was the key 5th man and final scorer for the Ephs.

Williams seniors Peter Watson and Brian Kirchner had solid performances as well and finished as the 6th and 7th men for the Ephs in times of 27:57 and 28:51, respectively.  For both of these men, it was their last race for Williams cross country.   

With these great performances, Williams finished third overall with 84 points.  Amherst won the title with 44 points, and Bates finished in second with 54.  Both these teams had a solid pack up front that was difficult to overcome.  Amherst had three runners in the top 5, and Bates had 4 runners in the top 11.  After the meet, head coach Pete Farwell said, "Our goal was to medal.  Even though we did not win, I was excited that our team edged out Tufts for third."

For these second seven runners, their season is now over.  The top seven runners will take to the course next at the Division 3 New England Regional Championships on November 10 at Westfield State where they will try to punch their ticket for nationals.   The top two teams next week will automatically advance to the national championship, and the next three finishing teams have a shot for an at-large bid.