Levine leads No. 24 Bates men past Tufts, WPI, USM at Bates Invitational

Ben Tonelli, Zach Magin and Justin Levine led the Bates men's cross country team to winning the Bates Invitational against visiting Tufts, WPI and Southern Maine on Sept. 16, 2017 at Pineland Farms in New Gloucester, Maine. (Theophil Syslo/Bates College)

NEW GLOUCESTER, Maine -- Sophomore Justin Levine was the first of four runners from the No. 24 nationally ranked Bates men's cross country team to finish within the top five overall, as the Bobcats won the Bates Invitational Saturday at Pineland Farms over Tufts, WPI and the University of Southern Maine.

With the top 10 runners from each team counting towards team scores, Bates, ranked fifth in the New England Region in Division III, scored 127 points, followed in second place by Tufts (197), ranked seventh in New England. WPI (240) and Southern Maine (298) took third and fourth places, respectively, despite USM freshman Chandler Vincent taking first place among individuals. Vincent covered the 8-kilometer course in 26:27.6.

Levine (Boca Raton, Fla.) finished 7.2 seconds behind Vincent in 26:34.8 for second place out of 66 men, his first career race as Bates' lead runner. Senior captain Zach Magin (West Hartford, Conn.) was third (26:45.4), followed by senior captain Ben Tonelli (Seattle, Wash.) in fourth (26:49.8) and junior Henry Colt (Whatley, Mass.) in fifth (26:52.2).

Bates' top 10 was rounded out by senior Matt Morris (Rockville, Md.) in eighth (26:56.0), junior Ryan Betz (Indianapolis, Ind.) in 10th (27:02.0), senior Stephen Rowe (Gambier, Ohio) in 17th (27:21.8), first-year Eliot Chalfin-Smith (Gainesville, Fla.) in 21st (27:30.7), first-year Tucker Barber (Wilton, Maine) in 28th (27:40.0), and sophomore Bryce O'Brien (Bristol, R.I.) in 29th (27:41.7).

On Sept. 30 at 11am, Bates will run its only race outside of New England prior to the NCAA Championships, competing in the Saratoga Invitational at Saratoga Spa State Park in Saratoga Springs, N.Y.