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Men's Cross Country Set to Tackle Northeast Regionals

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By Tim O'Dowd

HANOVER, N.H. – The Dartmouth men’s cross country team will line up at 11:45 a.m. on Friday morning at Van Cortlandt Park in the Bronx seeking a trip to Indiana State and the 2013 NCAA National Championship.

To reach their goal of making nationals, the Big Green first must earn the right with a strong showing at Friday’s Northeast Regional hosted by Manhattan College.

The men’s 8K race will get underway 15 minutes shy of noon and is the first of two regionals on the course that day as the women’s meet is set to begin at 1 p.m.

Dartmouth will seek to improve on its fourth-place finish at the 2012 Northeast Regional at Hammonasset State Park in Madison, Conn., leaving it just outside of the field of teams who advanced to the national meet.

To automatically qualify for the 2013 NCAA Championship in Terre Haute, Ind., a team must finish in the top-two at its regional meet, filling 18 of the 31 spots. The remaining 13 at-large selections will be determined on a list of criteria based on regular-season performances*. Similar requirements will apply for individual harriers.

Fresh off a third-place showing at the 2013 Ivy League Heptagonal Championship, the Green and White moved up one spot to No. 5 in the Northeast Regional Poll.

Will Geoghegan was the top Dartmouth runner in Connecticut last season, claiming 17th in 30:37. The senior from Maine has been one of the team’s top performers all season, joined by classmate John Bleday, who led the way at Heps with a ninth-place finish.

Four All-Ivy League Second Team runners from the Upper Valley will be at Van Cortlandt Park as Geoghegan, Bleday, Tim Gorman and Henry Sterling will represent the team alongside Steve Mangan, Brian Masterson, Dylan O’Sullivan and Silas Talbot.

The Big Green are looking to qualify for the NCAA Championship for the 18th time in program history and the first since 2005.

* At-large selection: The process for selection involves a review of regular-season competition and finish at the regional championships. Regional finish is the first criterion, for example, a fourth-place team may not be selected for an at-large berth ahead of a third-place team from the same region. But, a team with a fourth-place finish, for example, could “push” both the third- and fourth-place finishing team into the championships if the fourth-place team has enough “wins” to be the next at-large team. Wins from the regular-season are only counted if squads beat another’s “A” team, defined by having competed four or more individuals in that regular-season meet that competed at the regional championships. Official designations of “A” and “B” teams can only be accomplished after the results of the NCAA regional meets have been completed. Also, only competitions starting September 27 through regional meet weekend are included in the analysis.

Additional Individual Selections: After teams have been determined, 38 additional individuals per gender are selected to compete at the NCAA Championships. From those teams NOT selected in the above process, the top four finishers at each regional are automatically selected (but must have finished within the top 25 of the region).

At-large selection: Two additional athletes will be selected from the remainder of the national pool (and must have finished in the regional top-25) as at-large individuals.