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Carter Hamill '05
Sophomore sensation Carter Hamill finished 18th individually at the 2001 NCAA Championships

Cross Country Eyes Return to Nationals in 2002

August 9, 2002

The women capped an incredible 2001 season with a seventh-place finish at the NCAA Championship Meet held at Augustana College in Rock Island, IL. First-year phenom Carter Hamill and junior Martha Nelson each earned All-American honors with their 18th- and 19th-place finishes to lead the team of junior Aparna Nancherla and seniors Emily Lobsenz, Rebecca Woo, Diana Rancourt and Molly Burnett to their best-ever NCAA finish. The women turned in a third-place finish at the District Qualifying meet as well, with Hamill, Nelson, Nancherla, Woo and Rancourt all earning All-New England honors with Top-25 performances. Earlier in the season, the Jeffs finished third at the NESCAC Championships, won the ECAC Championships with Nelson, Nancherla, Burnett, sophomore Erinn White and first-year Sarah DeGraaf each earning All-ECAC accolades, and grabbed their best-ever finish at Open New Englands with a seventh-place finish.

The men, while very young with the majority of the team being underclassmen, also had a very successful season, finishing tenth at the New England District Qualifier. Led by first-year runner Matt Katz's and senior Ben Kozyak's All-ECAC performances, the Jeffs grabbed a runner-up finish at the ECAC Championships. Sophomore John Stanton-Geddes, first-year runners Jack Morgan and Zeke Phillips, junior Carson Taylor and senior Rusty Ryan consistently finished in the scoring seven.

Mike Page '04
Junior Mike Page looks to lead the men in 2002

Graduation will certainly have an effect on the makeup of this year's women's team. However, with its top three runners from last year's seventh-place NCAA team returning, the future looks bright for Amherst. Sophomore Carter Hamill, a cross country All-American and defending NCAA Indoor Champion at 5000 meters, will be a contender for the national championship title and should be pressed by senior All-American Martha Nelson. Juniors Aparna Nancherla and Erinn White should also have major impacts, as will senior captains Hilary Plum and Alison Dimon, who return from injury. Senior Laurel Kilgour, junior Helen Dole, and several first-year runners will all have the opportunity to step into the varsity scoring to help the team return to the NCAA Championships for the third consecutive year.

The men should be one of the surprise teams in the region as they return nearly their entire roster, with the benefit of an additional year of experience in tow. Sophomore Matt Katz, the team's top runner last year, will have his work cut out for him with junior Mike Page returning from injury and junior John Stanton-Geddes looking to lead the team at the front of the pack. Senior co-captain Carson Taylor improved significantly last season and should enter the season stronger than ever. Meanwhile, fellow senior co-captain Alex Lenkoski looks to return to his All-ECAC form from two years ago, while sophomore Jack Morgan, who was a late addition to the team in 2001 but was a major factor nonetheless, should be another strong contributor, as should classmate Zeke Phillips. Senior Brett Richey has recovered well enough from surgery to step back into a varsity role. He'll get a big push from sophomore David Molina, junior Andrew Schneider and several first-year runners, including David Schreiner, Fraser Kitchell and Max Prior.