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UMass finishes in top 20

Both Massachusetts cross-country teams competed at NCAA Regionals at Hammonasset State Park in Madison, Conn. this Saturday. The Minutemen took ninth place, while the Minutewomen finished in 19th.

Crossing the line first for the Minutemen was senior Kevin Johnson with a 36th place finish out of 229 runners. Johnson finished with a time of 31 minutes and two seconds. Senior Andrew Mulvaney was next to finish, crossing in 31:07.1.

Rounding out the top five for the Minutemen were David Johnson (31:16), Robert Deegan (31:35.6) and Daniel Barry (31:48.9), taking 46th, 67th and 76th place finishes, respectively.

Kevin Johnson said the event was a good team race, and that ninth place was a decent finish for them.

“[We] kind of wanted to surprise some people,” Johnson said.

 Johnson added that, while he crossed the line first for the Minutemen, it was Mulvaney who led the way for most of the race.

 “Mulvaney was carrying the torch for the first 9,000 meters,” Johnson said.

Around the 8,000 meter mark, Johnson made a move and took the lead for the Minutemen.

Johnson was pleased with the team and his overall performance because of the struggles some members of the team have had with injuries.

Barry was coming back from an injury after missing the Atlantic 10 Championship meet.

Johnson said next week’s race, the IC4A Championships in the Bronx, while a competitive race, isn’t as competitive as the conference and regional championships.

Next week’s race will be an opportunity for some of the freshmen to race varsity, as well as serve as any senior’s last collegiate race, Johnson said.

Johnson added that UMass will not qualify for nationals as a team and neither will any individual.

No. 15 Syracuse took first in Madison, while No. 4 Iona took second. Junior Leonard Korir of Iona finished first overall with a time of 29:36.9.

Providence, Dartmouth and Columbia rounded out the top five team finishers.

Leading the way for the Minutewomen for the second consecutive race was junior Karen Roa, finishing in a time of 21:25. Roa took 47th place out of 247 runners. Next to finish for UMass was senior Elizabeth Fisk, with a time of 22:08 in 101st place.

Rounding out the top five for the Minutewomen were senior Gina Perno, sophomore Courtney Baldwin and senior Shiyi Zan, taking 104th, 113th and 128th place finishes.

The Syracuse women also took first, followed by Stony Brook and Providence. Rounding out the top five squads were Boston College and Columbia.

Stony Brook Senior Lucy Van Dalen placed first overall in a time of 19:38.4.

This meet was the last of the season for the Minutewomen. Their best finish came in the New England Championships at Franklin Park in Boston. The team finished 11th out of 47 teams that day.

The Minutemen will prepare to close out their season next week in the IC4A Championships.

Eric Mansfield can be reached at

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