Hartford, Conn. – The Trinity College men's cross country team enjoyed another successful fall season in 2018 as the team won two invitationals and finished with five total top-ten finishes. The Bantams won as hosts at the season-opening Trinity Invitational as well as The James Earley Invitational at Westfield State, placed fifth at the UMass-Dartmouth Invitational and turned in a ninth-place finish at the New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) Championships. The Bantams, led by Head Coach George Suitor (27th season), finished the season with a 12th place finish out of 58 teams at the NCAA Division III New England Regional Championships.

Trinity started the season with a first-place finish at the Trinity Invitational at Wickham Park in Manchester, led by junior Ace McAlister (Great Barrington, Mass.), junior Timothy Bogomolov (Lynn, Mass.) and rookie Tim Lautenbach (Weston, Conn.) who finished first, second and fourth, respectively. McAlister bested the field by nearly 20 seconds with a finals time of 16:27.3 while Bogomolov came in behind him at 16:45.4. Lautenbach had a great race in his collegiate debut, crossing the finish line at 17:06.6. Trinity sophomore Stephen Tyler (Weston, Conn.) and senior Lucas Duros (Wilmette, Ill.) rounded out Trinity's top-ten performers with a seventh and eighth place finish, respectively.

Ace McAlister '20

Trinity followed with a fifth-place effort at the UMass-Dartmouth Invitational on September 15 as the squad totaled 194 points, just 11 shy of Division II Franklin Pierce in fourth, to place as the second-highest finishers among Division III schools. McAlister finished third with a time of 24:56.09 while senior captain Joe Ruggiero (Manchester, Conn.) was 25th at 25:50.45.

The Bantams closed out the month of September at the Paul Short Run at Lehigh against top competition and turned in a solid performance. Trinity was the fifth-highest finisher among Division III schools in the 44-team field. McAlister continued to impress, finishing ninth overall with a time of 25:17 over 8,000 meters to claim the top-Division III time.

Ruggiero (top), Tyler (left) and Bogomolov (right)

Lautenbach and Ruggiero both finished in the top-ten to lead the team to a first place finish at the James Earley Invitational at the beginning of October. The Bantams finished 20 points better than second place UMass-Dartmouth in the 29 team field. Lautenbach paced the Bantams with an eighth-place finish at 26:14.65 while Ruggiero finished just behind him at 26:15.90. Duros turned in a 16th-place performance while Tyler also finished top-20 in 18th-place.

Lautenbach (left) and Ruggiero (right)

The following weekend at the Connecticut College Invitational, McAlister finished 18th with a time of 25:28.1 as the Bantams recorded a top-ten finish in perhaps the most competitive regular season meet in New England. Trinity totaled 307 points, which was 15 points shy of ninth-place Messiah and 22 better than 11th-place Coast Guard. Bogomolov, Ruggiero and Duros each recorded top-100 finishes as well for the Bantams.

On October 27, Trinity took to a sloppy Franklin Park in Boston for the NESCAC Championships, hosted by Tufts. The Bantams finished ninth, led once again by McAlister who finished 22nd. Duros finished just 40 seconds behind McAlister in 27:00.0, good for 52nd place, while Ruggiero crossed just four seconds behind him for a 54th-place finish. Bogomolov and rookie Henry Potter (Lake Oswego, Ore.) both finished top-60 as well with 55th and 58th-place finishes, respectively.

Will Estony '21 & Henry Potter '22

The Bantams wrapped up the 2018 campaign at the NCAA Division III Regional Championships at Bowdoin College, where the squad posted a 12th-place finish, three spots better than its 2017 showing. McAlister was named to the United States Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) New England All-Regional Men's Cross Country Team for his outstanding performance as he finished 22nd with a time of 25:43.92. time left him less than one second outside of a top-20 finish and was nearly three seconds faster than the 23rd-place runner.

Trinity had a successful year in the classroom as well, as Duros, Ruggiero and sophomores Will Estony (Hopewell Junction, N.Y.) and Erkin Verbeek (Bethesda, Md.) were each named to the NESCAC All-Academic Team. Ruggiero additionally represented the team on the NESCAC All-Sportsmanship squad.

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