2006 Season's Weekly Race Notes

2006 Depth Chart

 Most recent meets first and Depth Chart at the bottom
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NCAA's- Nov 18th

Runner of the Meet - Heather Wilson'07

The women headed to the National Championships looking to compete against the best teams in the country and when the day had finished, the best team proved to be a familiar foe, as Middlebury edged us out by one point - the closest finish in history - 144-145, with Calvin only 4 points back in 3rd place. Knowing that things were going to be very tight, and that the team battle was up for grabs and and would be determined by a very small amount of points became heartbreaking clear when the results were posted. Middlebury finished with 144 points, while we were 1 point behind them. While the course was a flat one that has seen its share of fast times in the past time, mother nature dumped enormous amounts of rain on it in the past 2 weeks and changed the complexion of it. Where there once was grass was now ankle deep mud and standing water puddles up to your calves, and what was to be a fast course now became a race of strength and attrition. Heather Wilson and Kim Partee worked together and got out aggressively, moving into the Top 15 by the mile and then continued to move from there. In the last mile, Heather would pull away slightly and finished in 7th place - her first ever All-American finish, and her biggest race ever. Kim came in only a few seconds later, grabbing 11th place - improving upon her 34th place from last year. Meg Ray had a big race as well, as she moved up strongly in the last mile to finish 45th - missing All-American by a mere 9 seconds - and Shauneen Garrahan came in 4 seconds later in 49th. Elise Tropiano battled both a leg injury and the mud to finish out the scoring for us in 75th while and Sophie Galleher, capping a phenomenal freshman season, came in 78th, 2 seconds after her. Katie Moravec finished 167th to round out the varsity seven who made Amherst history by being the first team to stand on the awards stand and improving upon our 5th place performance from 5 four years ago. In the 4 races we did not win this season, we finished 2nd in each and the combined margin of difference from us to the winner was a miniscule 19 points. While the mud probably played a factor in the race, we did not let it deter our determination to finish the season with a great race, and while missing the win by such a tiny margin certainly stings, we will return 6 of our 7 (and a great deal of depth to back them up) and they have already set their sights on winning the Championship next fall.

New England Regionals- Nov 11th

Runner of the Meet - Daniel Murner '10 & Heather Wilson '07

The teams headed to Veterans park Golf Course in Springfield to try and earn a spot for the NCAA Championships at the New England Regional Championships. With the top 2 teams earning an automatic bid, and then the next 3 placing teams eligible for an at-large selection, the hope was at least for a top 5 finish for the men and one of the Top spots for the women. The women saw the return of senior captain, Shauneen Garrahan who had been out of action for a few weeks due to injury, but also did not have the service of another top scorer, Elise Tropiano who was nursing a nagging injury. With NESCAC's decided by less then 10 points, the women knew they were in for a battle,and when the dust had settled, they were on the short end of the stick by 5 points to a Middlebury team who had their best race of the year. Heather Wilson had her strongest race of the year as she led the team with her 5th place finish, and Shauneen had a strong return in finishing 8th. Kim Partee had a bit of an off day for her, but still would finish 14th. Sophie Galleher continued her first year dominance as she placed 21st, and for another week, was the top first year in the race. Katie Moravec had a very strong 2nd half of the race, as she moved up very well in the last Mile to finish 30th and close out the scoring for the team, while Meg Ray was a little off her race btu still finished 31st - helping the team to grab 6 All-Region finishers (Top 35). Laura mortimer, stepping in for Elise, had a great race and while she just missed earning All New England honors, she displaced scoring runners from all but 2 teams. With the 2nd place finish - the best in team history - the women advance automatically to the NCAA's in Wilmington Ohio this weekend, and will be gunning for a top finish against the best teams in the country.

The men actually got the day started, and while they had been racing very strong as a team this season, we did not look nearly as sharp as we had. Carlyle Eubank ran a very gutsy race, as he got out well and moved up into the Top 10 and was there through 4.5 miles before the effort got to him and he faded considerably. Despite the last 1/2 mile misery, he ran a tremendous race and will be a force to be reckoned with in the future. Daniel Murner ran a strong race, and established himself in good position and moved up well over the last 2 miles to finish 19th - the only Amherst runner to finish in the Top 35 to earn All Region honors, as well as finishing as the Top freshman runner. Harrison Lakehomer just missed All-Region honors as he finished 36th, while 2005 All-American Tomas Morrissey just cracked the top 50, with Senior Nate Freese coming in a few steps after in 59th. Mike Harbus and Cooper Knowlton rounded out the seven runners competing. Trinity and Wesleyan, finishing 3rd and 4th both advanced to the NCAA's while the 5th place team, Tufts, did not advance. Having beaten all of these teams in the last few weeks, Amherst certainly would have made the NCAA championships - even if having placed as the 5th team - but that is why you race the race, rather then put it on paper. A bittersweet ending to an outstanding season.


ECAC's - Nov 4th

Runner of the Meet - Carlyle Eubank'10 & Katie Moravec'07

While sitting the top runners from each squad (as they rested for Districts), the teams hoped to showcase their depth at the ECAC Championships hosted by Williams College. The men came away with a 3rd place finish, while the women came away with a convincing victory as they placed all 5 scorers in the Top 12. The men were paced by first year Carlyle Eubank as he got out hard and raced in the front pack of runners throughout the entire race. Not only did he finish 8th - earning ALL ECAC honors, but looked to put all the pieces together with his racing and could have a big impact with the team next week. Robert Boley also grabbed All-ECAC honors, as he finished 13th over all (Top 15 earned the conference accolades) with another solid race, and just behind him, but missing All-ECAC by one place was first year Eric Holaday who had a great a race despite nursing a groin injury all week. John Babbot finished of his Amherst XC career with a solid 25th place finish, and Peter Foote closed out he scoring with his 64th place run. First years Williams Bell and Tom Anderson capped strong first year campaigns with solid runs,and should be part of a great nucleus for next year's success.

The women had a dominating performance on Saturday in the 6k race, and continued to rack up the Championship honors. After having won the JV Race at the All New England Championships - an indication of depth and strength - they raced with the focus and purpose of capitalizing on that depth in this race. Sitting out those runners who had established themselves as the set varsity, the women racing knew that they were in for a tough race with a very strong Williams "second" squad, and the regular varsity team from Coast Guard. Junior Katie Moravec got hard from the gun and established herself in the front, never straying farther then 4th place and certainly ran her best race of the season thus far, as she finished 2nd overall, and will bring that confidence with her next week. First year Rachel Cameron, despite nursing a leg injury towards the end of the week, came away from the race with her best run of the season and added a huge boost to the team with her 5th place performance. Junior Laura Mortimer had a great race, as she went out with the leaders from the gun and held on well to finish 8th overall. Sophomores Caitlin McDermott-Murphy and Nicole Anderson would close out the scoring with some great running, as both moved up well through the 2nd half of the race to finish 10th and 12th respectively. Zandra Walton would up 33rd, while Nicole Green capped a great first year of XC racing with a big race. Both teams will head to Veterans Park Golf Course on Saturday to compete for the chance to qualify for the the NCAA's

NESCAC's - Oct 28th

Runner of the Meet - Robert Boley'07 & Cate Knuff'10

Some people say that true XC weather is when there is some rain and mud but I am not quite sure what you could say this weekend was. The teams went to Conn College, and the beautiful course along the ocean, for the NESCAC Championships but with standing water above knees in places, mud above ankles, the ocean surf coming down on the runners and winds gusting as much as 60 MPH this was for the hard core XC fans. Despite the weather, both teams came away with great results as the women won - though narrowly - their first ever NESCAC Title, while the men came away with third place - tying their best ever finish. The women, despite the absence of Shauneen, hardly seemed to let the weather faze them as they went right to the front and established themselves early. Kim Partee and Heather Wilson ran in the top five the entirety of the race until Heather fell in the lower marsh section (under water) and dropped a few spots, and Kim did not negotiate a turn and dropped back from 4th to 6th - despite this, both earned All-NESCAC honors, and were joined by Meg Ray who grabbed the final All-NESCAC spot as she finished in 14th. Sophie Galleher finished 15th, and for the 4th straight year for Amherst, earned NESCAC Rookie of the Year honors as the top freshmen. Elise Tropiano finished 18th, to round out the scoring, while Caitlin Murphy and Katie Moravec finished 31st and 39th to round out the 7. Zandra Walton had a strong race to finish 8th for the team, with Laura Mortimer coming in shortly after her. Cate Knuff, added to the Championship race early that morning due to illness of another runner, came through with her best race of the season - though, unfortunately, the time is not indicative of the effort. The final results could not have been much closer as we were able to win with 64 points, a mere 5 points ahead of Tufts in 69, then Williams in 70 and Middlebury in 71. The team will look forward to trying to defend their ECAC title this weekend as they try and showcase their depth as they will have several of the"set varsity" runners sitting out and resting up for Districts in 2 weeks - which should be another tough test.

The men, despite not having perhaps their best stuff, were able to duplicate their best ever finish at the championships with their 3rd place showing. While Williams dominated the meet - 6 in the Top 12 - it was a very close battle for the third spot, as we were able to finish just ahead of Trinity, Wesleyan and Middlebury. Harrison Lakehomer was the first runner for the team, finishing 15th - just outside of All-NESCAC recognition - while Daniel Murner and Tomas Morrissey finished in 23rd and 25th. Nate Freese ran a great race as the team's 4th man, while Robert Boley stepped into the scoring for the first time this season, as he closed out the day as the 5th man. Cooper Knowlton and Peter Foote came in just a few seconds after to round out the varsity seven. Eric Holaday, John Babbott and William Bell finished within a few seconds of one another - just outside of our top 7. In the open race, held after the 2 championship races, the lead runner inadvertently took a wrong turn and the rest of the field followed, and they did not run the same course as the others had earlier. In that race, despite the snafu, Rich Wilson and Carlyle Eubank ran strong while several of the team finished their seasons up with strong showings. Certainly, the hope of everyone was to get the chance to post some really fast times on this lightning quick course, but mother nature's intervention made that impossible! While some runners will be resting for Districts in 2 weeks, the next 7 will head to Williamstown on Saturday and look to finish in the Top 3 at ECAC's.

Little Three's - Oct 21st

Runner of the Meet - Harrison Lakehomer '09 & John Babbott '07 and Meg Ray'08

The teams took to their home course in the annual Little Three Championships in front of a loud and raucous crowd of family and friends. With the soaking rains from the night before leaving standing water puddles on the field loop portion of the course, it was cross country racing at its finest. The women got the day started on a winning note. Despite the absence of their top runner, Shauneen Garrahan, the team was still able to find a way to squeak past an extremely strong Williams team by 3 points. Ellen Davis from Wesleyan won the race handily, but the action behind her was as good as it can get. Kim Partee finished 2nd overall with a great race, and was followed shortly after by Williams' 1-2 All-American duo of Harlin and Gleason. Elise Tropiano came in 5th, with a hard charging Heather Wilson right after her in 6th. It was Meg Ray's huge finish in the final straightaway, that got her past the 3-4-5 runners of Williams and then Sophie Galleher's 11th place finish that capped the 31-34 point victory. Caitlin McDermott-Murphy continues to heat up, as she did last season, as she raced up in the front 7 for the first time this season and cracked the 20 minute mark for the course. Just a few steps behind her came Nicole Anderson, who has been improving with every race, and within 15 seconds of her came Laura Mortimer, Rachel Cameron and Katie Moravec. Nicole Green knocked an amazing 3 minutes off of her time on the same course from the AC Invite, and has been showing great promise in her first year of running XC. Cate Knuff had a solid race, and Shalyon closed out the day fo the team with a run that was over 2 minutes better then her first race on the course.

The men knew that it was going to be a battle this year, and while the depth of Williams squad could be seen clearly on the starting line, it was also very visible as the race progressed. In the middle of the race, Tomas Morrissey controlled the pace, and was joined in the front by Harrison Lakehomer, and in the last mile of the race, harrison took the lead and held on to win the race over a fast charging Williams runner - Amherst's first individual winner since Rob Mitchell in 1998. Tomas, on the road back from injury raced tough to grab 6th, but will certainly be a threat in the coming weeks. Looking to try and topple Wesleyan - ranked 22nd in the latest NCAA Polls - first years Daniel Murner and Eric Holaday crossed the line in 19th and 20th, just behind the Wesleyan 3-4 runners. Seniors Cooper Knowlton and Nate Freese finished in front of the Wesleyan 5th runner, to grab the runner-up spot by 3 points 52-55. John Babbott had a strong race, as he cracked the Top 7 for the first time this season. Tommy Anderson continues his great first year, as he had another strong race, while Peter Foote came in a few steps after him. Robert Boley, Carlyle Eubank and William Bell all came in within seconds of each other, and under 28 minutes. Jimmy Swanson and Rom Cabeza both ran considerably faster then they had in the early meet this year, as did first year runners Kit Callahan, Steve Grigelevich and Will Fairhurst. Jack Kiley returned to action for the first time since last winter, as he had been out with an injury.

Open New England's - Oct 7th

Runner of the Meet - Cooper Knowlton '07 and Nicole Anderson '09

The teams traveled to Franklin park in Boston - site of the World Cross Country Championships in 1991 - to take on the competition at the All New England Championships. The meet has schools from all three divisions - I, II and III - and while some of the schools in the region choose to not run, it is still an outstanding meet that provides great competition, and a field that is deeper than any other race that we will see this season. The field is so large, that the races are split into varsity and JV, and both races have nearly 300 finishers in each. The women's JV race was first on the day, and with the goal coming into the race being to try and win their race, the mission was accomplished. Laura Mortimer led the way as she placed 5th overall with a great run of 19:15 - in the next 15 seconds, the scoring 5 would all come in as Nicole Anderson was 9th in 19:18 (her first race since the Amherst Invite a great indicator for the upcoming races), Caitlin Murphy in 12th in 19:22, Rachel Cameron just after her in 19:23 and Zandra closing out the scoring at 19:30. Liz Dalton got under 20 minutes, and Nicole Green had her best race of the season, as she gets closer to breaking the 20 minute barrier, while Cate KNuff was just behind her and Shaylon Stolk had her best race of the year. The tone was set for the women's varsity, and their goal coming in was to finish in the Top 3 (would better our best finish ever) and to be the first DIII team. When the dust was settled, they accomplished both, as they earned the runner-up plaque - a mere 9 points away from the win, and handily defeated the other DIII Teams. Shauneen Garrahan led the team with her 4th place finish (17:34 - XC PR), using a big kick in the last 20 meters to move in front of three other runners. Kim Partee dipped under 18 minutes for the first time in XC as she place 12th in 17:56. Heather Wilson grabbed 21st, as she ran 18:15, while Sophie Galleher continues to impress in her first year as she ran 18:37 to finish 46th, with Elise Tropiano rounding out the scoring a few seconds back, in 18:43. Meg Ray dipped under 19 minutes for the first time (18:58) while katie Moravec finished in 19:15. The women will run together in 2 weeks at Little Three's.

The men's results were kind of a mixed bag - we had some great races on the day, and some that were not up to the level that we are capable of, but even those with off races, were still able to post some fast times which was encouraging. Despite not having our best team race, we were able to finish 17th overall, and finish 5th amongst DIII teams - with a mere 13 points separating Wesleyan, Williams, MIT and us. Harrison Lakehomer finished 35th overall, and ran to his fastest time ever, of 25:28 (7th DIII runner). Cooper Knowlton had a phenomenal race as well, as he not only got under the 26 minute barrier, but also stepped up big when the team needed it most, as he jumped from our 5th scorer all the way to our #2 guy. First year Daniel Murner, getting his first big race experience, dipped under 26 minutes while Tomas Morrissey came in at 26:05. Nate Freese, followed an off rae at Tufts with a big ON race as he raced to a 26:08 time and finished as the final scorer for the team. Mike Harbus ran a 26:14, and Peter Foote rounded out the varsity 7 with his 26:35. In the JV race, the guys finished 7th overall, and as the 2nd DIII team - behind only Williams - and posted some great times, with many of the guys running to big PR's on the day. First year Eric Holaday led the team with his 22nd place finish, and ran 26:25. A mere 16 seconds separated Eric from our 6th runner, as John Babbott26:32, a trio of first years with great races - Williams Bell 26:34, Tommy Anderson 26:36 and Jimmy Swanson 26:40 - and Robert Boley 26:41 all finished in the top 50 of the race. Rom Cabeza raced to a new XC PR of 27:27, as did first year runners Stephen Grigelevich and Kit Callahan, while another first year, Ben Klein made his season debut and just missed breaking 30 minutes. The teams will race together in 2 weeks at the Little Three Championships at home, in what might be one the most competitive Little Three's in recent memory as Williams, Wesleyan and Amherst are all very strong this season, and should provide a lot of excitement.

Tufts Invite - Sept 23rd

Runner of the Meet - Daniel Murner'10 & Rachel Cameron'10 and Sophie Galleher'10

The teams headed to Tufts for a small 5 team meet, and a chance for the women to get a feel for the 6k distance that they will be running in the championship meets later in the season. The men got under way first, and became a battle with Tufts and Bates, as it was impossible to tell who might be winning until the last hundred meters of the race. Despite coming out on the short end of the stick - losing to Tufts by one point and beating Bates by 15 - we got some solid performances, as well as things that we know we will need to work on in the coming weeks. Harrison Lakehomer led the team with his 3rd place finish, as he returned to racing after a week layoff due to a lingering cold that he seemingly affected nearly everyone at some point in the last 2 weeks. First year Daniel Murner improved on his time from last weeks meet - despite the more challenging terrain - and finished 4th, with Tomas Morrissey right on his heels in 5th. Mike Harbus finished 4th for the team, in 12th place, while Cooper Knowlton ran in the Top 5 for the 3rd week in a row, with Peter Foote coming in right after him at 15th. Robert Boley rebounded fm an off-race the week before to finish 7th for the team and close out the scoring. Eric Holaday continues to impress as he nearly matched his 5 mile time from the week before, as did fellow first year runner, Tom Anderson who would finish 11th for the team - with seniors Rich Wilson and Nate Freese in between the two. The guys will be off this weekend from racing, and will look forward to returning to racing at the Open New England's where they will get the chance to se where they stand against their NE foes.

The women were missing a couple of key runners, and when racing against one of the better teams in the country, it is tough to be a little shorthanded. Despite the absence of some of our prominent runners, the team put up a valiant effort in the 5 point loss. Shauneen Garrahan came up a couple of seconds short of the win, but with every race comes knowledge and the experiences will pay off later in the season for her. Heather Wilson finished 6th as she continues to improve, and Sophie Galleher stepped up big time, as she finished 7th, running under 23 minutes in her first crack at the 6k distance. Elise Tropiano grabbed her 3rd Top 10 finish in a row, while Laura Mortimer had a strong race to finish 10th, and 5th for the team. Caitlin Murphy and Rachel Cameron each had strong races as they finished 6th and 7th for the team, while finishing in the Top 15. Liz Dalton dipped under 24 minutes despite feeling the effects of the team plague - which has hopefully now run its course and will not be an issue later in the season - and Nicole Green and Cate Knuff raced strong in their 6k debuts. Like the men, the women will be off this weekend and will look forward to returning in full force at Open New England's in 2 weeks to test their strength against the best of the region.

UMass Dartmouth Invite - Sept 16th

Runner of the Meet - Tom Anderson '10 & Sophie Galleher '10

While only the 2nd meet of the season, the teams split up into varsity and Sub-varsity for this meet, due to the size of the field and the restrictions placed upon it. The men ran their entire first year class in the sub-varsity section, along with those who were not running the 7 person varsity field. In what should prove to be a great foundation for the future, as well as showing quite a bit of promise for things to come down the road this season, the first year guys dominated the sub-varsity race as Daniel Murner led the team with his 5th place showing, and the first scoring runner of the race. Following close behind in 6th and 7th were Jimmy Swanson and William Bell, and after skipping a place, Carlyle Eubank and Eric Holaday came in at 9th and 10th to close out the scoring with a meager 17 points. John Babbott in 12th, and Tom Anderson who had a phenomenal race to grab 19th rounded out the Top 7. Rom Cabeza and Will Fairhurst broke into the Top 30, with the runs, while Steve Grigelevich, Eric Glustrom and Kit Callahan all raced under 29 minutes, with Sam Hayman just missing the mark. Steve Stewart, known more for his track prowess nearly broke 30 minutes for the day. In the men's varsity race, the strength of the team was hindered a bit by illness as harrison Lakehomer did not race and Mike Harbus was obviously still feeling the effects of his week long battle with a cold, but on the bright side, Tomas Morrissey returned to racing for the first time since last winter and stepped in as the front runner, finishing 13th overall. Peter Foote would knock of 30 seconds from his best 5 mile time ever to finish 22nd, and was the team's #2 runner. Nate Freese and Cooper Knowlton finished in 33rd and 34th respectively, with Rich Wilson grabbing the final scoring spot in 48th to lead the team to a 4th place finish.

The women dominated their race, and won by over 30 points and turned back #8 ranked Colby in the process. Shauneen Garrahan led the race for the majority before being passed by a strong UMass Lowell runner in the last 800, but still finished under 18 minutes for the 5k course. Kim Partee ran a solid race to finish 3rd overall, while Elise Tropiano was in a tight battle for the entire race with Colby's Top 2 runners and would wind up finishing 6th overall with her best 5k XC time. Heather Wilson finished 9th, with Katie Moravec grabbing a 12th place finish to secure the victory. Meg Ray nearly broke 19 minutes as she placed 16th, and Laura Mortimer rounded out the Varsity 7 with her 23rd place finish - capping a very strong team run where all 7 finished in the Top 25. In the sub varsity race, despite feeling the effects of the cold that has been hampering the teams, Sophia Galleher went out hard form the gun and led for the entire race as she grabbed her first college victory, nearly running faster then ever before. As convincing as the varsity win was, the sub-varsity crew would take it one step further as Sophie, Caitlin Murphy, Zandra Walton, Rachel Cameron and Liz Dalton (throwing a big kick in to ensure the sweep) swept the top 5 places in earning a perfect score of 15. Cate Knuff grabbed a Top 20 spot, while Nicole Green showed a big kick in the end as she had a great race to finish 35th, and Shaylon Stolk nearly broke 23 minutes. The teams will race together next weekend at Tufts, as they race their first 6k of the season.

Amherst Invite - Sept 9th

Runner of the Meet - Harrison Lakehomer'09 & Elise Tropiano'09

Both teams got the 2006 season under way with the running of the Amherst Invite, competing against Springfield, Merrimack and Wheaton. The women got the day started with a dominant victory as they finished with 19 points, and placing 7 in the Top 10 and 11 in the Top 15. Shauneen Garrahan grabbed the victory, defending her title from a year ago, and looked effortless on the hot and humid day. A Springfield runner finishing in second place stood in the way of a Top 5 sweep, as Kim Partee, Elise Tropiano, Katie Moravec and Heather Wilson finished 3,4,5,6 to round out the scoring. Meg Ray and Laura Mortimer rounded out the varsity 7, as they both placed in the Top 10. Finishing 10 seconds apart in places 11-14 were Liz Dalton, Zandra Walton, Nicole Anderson and first year harrier Sophia Galleher. Caitlin Murphy and Rachel Cameron finished in 16 and 17th place, while Catherine Knuff and Nicole Green also made their XC debuts and finished back to back in the placing.

The men were led by Harrison Lakehomer's victory, as he and Mike Harbus led a 1-2 sweep, with Cooper Knowlton (returning from study abroad), Peter Foote, Nathaniel Freese and Rich Wilson finishing 4,5,6 and 7 along with Carlyle Eubank's 5 mile debut in 9th and Rob Boley grabbing 10th. While treating this as a hard temp effort, and effectively working through the meet as we prepare for the upcoming meets in the schedule, it was a good indicator of the strength and depth of the team, as we got good front running and a solid depth in the pack. Beyond the Top 10, we also grabbed 11,12 and 14th with first year runners Jimmy Swanson and Eric Holaday sandwiched around John Babbott to put 11 runners in the Top 14. Other first year guys to get their feet wet with the 5 mile distance, were Daniel Murner, William Bell in 19th, Stephen Grigelevich in 21stm Kit Callahan with a great run in 23rd, Will Fairhurst in 26th and Tom Anderson in 36. The team will head to UMass dartmouth next week, splitting up as 7 guys will run in he varsity section and all first year runners, and those upper class runners beyond the 7 will run in the sub-varsity race.