While the season ended earlier than we expected, we couldn't be more proud of everything the team accomplished together during the cross country and track and field seasons before we had to go our separate ways.
Before the season got started, the cross country team enjoyed a few team bonding activities, including a brunch after a Sunday long run, an afternoon volunteering at our Book & Plow farm on campus, and helping the firstyears move in.
Little III Championships
Purple Valley Classic
Gigi Chrappa and Maggie Drew (L-R)
The next meet was the Purple Valley Classic, hosted by Williams College. The meet ran on the same course that would be used at the NESCAC Championships, giving the team a great opportunity to race on the course they would compete on a little more than one month later to race for the conference title. The men placed 5th and the women placed 6th in strong fields in the first race over the typical cross country race distance, which is 8k for men and 6k for women.
Some highlights for the men included a great first 8k race for firstyear Keon Mazdisnian, who finished as our fourth Mammoth. Additionally, Will Merhige returned to racing for the first time in one year after injuries!
For the women, Paige Reddington and Sarah Gayer both ran great races, as they both passed several runners throughout the race and improved upon their finishes at the meet from 2018 by 23 and 39 places, respectively.
Paul Short Invitational
Owen Daily fighting to the finish line
The next race on the schedule was the Paul Short Invitational, a meet known for its fast course and great competition. We saw nine Mammoths set personal bests, as Sarah Gayer, Eline Laurent, Jenny Mazzella, Spencer Ferguson-Dryden, Braxton Schuldt, Jamie Mazzola, Owen Daily, Billy Massey and Lev Robertson improved upon their previous best time!
The men placed 36th in their race with mostly Division I teams, and the women placed twentieth in their race in a strong field of teams from all three divisions.
Spencer Ferguson-Dryden and Sarah Gayer led the Mammoths, and each broke significant time barriers for their respective race distances, as Spencer broke 25 minutes, and Sarah broke 22 minutes.
Connecticut College Invitational
The next meet for the Mammoths was the Connecticut College Invitational, a meet featuring a strong field of Division III teams from across the nation.
The men placed ninth in a strong field, fighting through a densely packed course.
Billy Massey, pictured, had a great race, stepping up as the second Mammoth across the finish line, and tied his personal best set two weeks prior. Braxton Schuldt lost his shoe, stopped to put it back on, and fought his way through the entire race and rallied to finish as the third Mammoth. And on his birthday, Aydin Williams set a personal best!
The men had a great race, placing second as a team! This marked the fifth consecutive year in which the men have either won or placed second at the NESCAC Championships, a fantastic display of team strength and depth.
The men were led by Spencer Ferguson-Dryden, who placed 14th and earned All-NESCAC honors. Not far behind him were Braxton Schuldt, Billy Massey and Jamie Mazzola, who placed 17th, 18th and 19th, respectively. Owen Daily placed 31st and entered the Mammoths top-five for the first time, coming up clutch!
Every single woman on the team successfully executed their race plan, as they all moved up the field throughout the race and finished in a lower place finish than they were at at the first mile mark.
Senior Kristin Ratliff (pictured) was the fourth Mammoth to cross the finish line, placing 45th!
Coming back from mid-season injuries, Olivia Polischeck rallied to finish as the third Mammoth, placing 33rd!
Sarah Gayer and Sophie Wolmer (L-R) led the Mammoths placing 23rd and 24th, respectively. For Sarah, it was her highest place finish at the NESCAC Championships by nearly 30 places, and Sophie had a fantastic first championship race and was the third highest placing firstyear in the race!
With a trip to the Division III Cross Country National Championships on the line, the NCAA New England Regional Championships was an important meet for the Mammoths. On a cold day in Brunswick, Maine the Mammoths brought their all, and were cheered on by many teammates who made the trip to cheer!
Firstyear Keon Mazdisnian had a fantastic race as the Mammoths fourth runner, placing 39th, narrowly missing All-Region honors. Jamie Mazzola rounded out the Mammoths top-five, placing 43rd. Ajay Sarathy and Owen Daily rounded out the Mammoths finishers, as they placed 45th and 46th, respectively.
The men placed 4th in a deep field, and earned their sixth consecutive team qualification for Nationals!
Like he did all season, senior Spencer Ferguson-Dryden (pictured) led the team, placing 59th on a muddy day in Louisville. He improved upon his best finish at Nationals by more than 50 places!
The race marked the Nationals debut for juniors Braxton, Ajay and Jamie (L-R above). Braxton closed out a breakout season, breaking 26 minutes for the fourth time and Ajay ran a season best time.
Billy Massey ended an awesome season on a great note, competing at Nationals for the first time and finished as the second Mammoth. Additionally, he finished in a time of 25:30, marking the fourth time during the season he ran either 25:29 or 25:30, a remarkable display of consistency.
During Interterm, the team had a great time getting to know each other doing fun activities like bowling, laser tag, playing Minute to Win It games, and goofed around on Media Day.
Little III Championships
Winning the meet required a team effort, and the Mammoths did just that in their first meet of the year. Henry Buren and Nehemiah McGowan placed first and second, respectively, in the 60 and 200 meter dash. Henry set the school record in the 60 meter dash, running a time of 7.00 seconds! Spencer Ferguson-Dryden won the mile leading gun to tape and Ryan Prenosil won the 800.
Troy Colleran won the high jump and placed second in the pole vault on misses while setting a significant personal best. Jordan Edwards won the triple jump, and firstyear Kelechi Eziri placed second in both the triple and long jump.
Victories in the 4x800 and 4x400 meter relays were crucial to win the meet, and the Mammoths delivered! The team of Will Spurrell, Alfred Kibowen, Braedon Fiume and Spencer Ferguson-Dryden won the 4x800 relay. The 4x400 team of Ben Wadsworth, Ellis Phillips-Galucci, Matt Gelin and Ryan Prenosil won the meet concluding 4x400, as Ryan brought the team home to victory with a dominating last 200 meters.
The women had a great meet, placing second and scored more points than they have in recent years!
14 Mammoths set personal bests and 8 Mammoths earned D3 New England Championships qualifying marks, and the Mammoths couldn't have been happier!
Tufts Cupid Challenge and Blue & Orange Multi
At Tufts, the women's 4x200 relay won, running a time of 1:46 that made them third all-time in school history!
Nehemiah McGowan took back the school record in the 60 meter dash in the prelims in a time of 6.96 seconds, and brought it down even more in the semifinals, running a time of 6.92 seconds! Henry Buren won the final in a time of 6.96 seconds, and Nehemiah placed second narrowly behind him, also in a time of 6.96 seconds!
Maggie Drew set a personal best in the mile, among several other personal bests set in the mid-distance and distance events!
Ella Rossa broke her school record in the 60 hurdles again, running a time of 8.87 seconds!
Both the men's and women's teams placed 4th at the Division III New England Championships, the highest finish for both the men and women in recent years!
The two-day meet began on Friday with the distance medley relay and heptathlon for the men, and pentathlon for the women.
The men's distance medley relay of Braedon Fiume, Will Spurrell, Ellis Phillips-Galucci and Owen Daily placed third!
Ella Rossa won the pentathlon in a school record, as she earned 3,265 points!
On Saturday, Ella won the 60 hurdles in a personal best time of 8.85 seconds!
Troy Colleran, on the right, won the heptathlon and broke his own school record, earning 5,048 points! Teammate Jack Trent, on the left, set a personal best in his second heptathlon, ending his first track season ever on a high note!
Ryan Prenosil won the 600 in a time of 1:21! Katie Lingen moved up to fourth all-time at Amherst in the 600 with her time of 1:38!
At the end of the meet, the men's 4x800 relay of Braedon Fiume, Spencer Ferguson-Dryden, Will Spurrell and Ryan Prenosil won the 4x800! The men's 4x400 of Kyland Smith, Ellis Phillips-Galucci, Alex Mangiafico and Stanley Dunwell placed sixth!
The women's 4x400 of Anna Madden, Katie Lingen, Juanita Jaramillo and Sophia Friedman placed second! The women's 4x800 of Jordan Bailey-Rhodeman, Rachel Ruderman, Jenny Mazzella and Grace Haase placed fourth!
We couldn't be prouder of all of the Mammoths who competed and contributed to a fantastic team result and the ten Mammoths who set personal bests!
Tufts National Qualifying Meet
The men's distance medley relay of Billy Massey, Stanley Dunwell, Ryan Prenosil and Spencer Ferguson-Dryden won!
With their winning time of 10:01, the relay team qualified for the Division III Indoor Track & Field National Championships!
Nehemiah McGowan set a school record in the 60 meter dash, running a time of 6.89 seconds!
With his time, he qualified for the National Championships, an incredible result in his first season of track ever!
The women's 4x400 relay team of Anna Madden, Sam Tichelaar, Katie Lingen and Juanita Jaramillo broke their own school record, running a time of 3:54!
Though they narrowly missed qualifying for the National Championships, the team of all sophomores will return in 2021 eager for success!