Men's cross country settles for 4th place at NESCACs

BRUNSWICK, Maine -- The No. 4 nationally ranked Bates men's cross country team produced another strong performance but suffered its first disappointment of the season nonetheless, finishing fourth out of 11 teams at the NESCAC Championships on Saturday at Bowdoin. It is the first meet this season in which Bates hasn't finished in first place.

The rival and host Polar Bears added yet another chapter to the teams' neck-and-neck rivalry, nipping the Bobcats for third place by a point, 88 to 89. Bates and Bowdoin tied for second place at last year's NESCACs, and two weeks ago Bates defeated Bowdoin by one point to win the State of Maine meet.

Tufts was the team winner with 66 points, followed by Middlebury with 69. Defending champion Williams rounded out the top five with 97 points.

Bates junior Mike Martin (Slatersville, R.I.) finished sixth among 124 runners overall to lead Bates, covering the 8-kilometer course in 24:35.70, edging Williams' Chris Lee by less than a second. Martin earned First Team All-NESCAC honors for his top-seven performance, his first all-conference honor. Martin placed 45th at last year's NESCAC championship.

Senior Andrew Wortham (Newton, Mass.) finished ninth in 24:38.60 and junior Tully Hannan (West Hartford, Conn.) came in 12th at 24:49.57. On Tuesday, Martin, Wortham and Hannan were officially recognized on the NESCAC Men's Cross Country All-Conference Team. It is Hannan's third career All-NESCAC honor in cross country, and Wortham's second.

Junior Noah Graboys (Glencoe, Ill.) placed 27th in 25:18.84, and senior Ken Whitney (West Hartford, Conn.) rounded out Bates scorers in 35th at 25:30.22. Sophomore John Stansel (Newburyport, Mass.) was right behind in 36th (25:32.21, followed by sophomore Camden Black-Ingersoll (Concord, N.H.) in 45th at 25:48.30.

Bates will compete at the ECAC Championship next Saturday, Nov. 3 at 11am in Williamstown, Mass., followed on Nov. 10 by the NCAA Regionals in Westfield, Mass.