No. 18 Men’s Cross Country Captures First East Region Title Since ‘13

Skyhawks secure fourth regional title in program history

Taxter was the first Skyhawk across the finish line, earning his first All-Region honor (PHOTO by Nick LoVerde)

AMHERST, N.Y. (November 4, 2017) – The Stonehill College men's cross country team, ranked first in the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) East Regional polls and 18th in national polls, won the NCAA Division II East Regional Championship Saturday afternoon at the Audobon Golf Course, hosted by Daemen College.

This is the fourth regional title for the Skyhawks in program history, and first since 2013 when the team beat Franklin Pierce University by 19 points. Stonehill continues adding to its first-place results this season, as this is the sixth-straight title, and most ever won by either the men's or women's program in one season.

Stonehill, which saw five runners post All-East Region performances on the day, finished with 39 points, just 66 points ahead of runner-up American International College totaling 105 points, who won the championship last year. Third place Merrimack College (121 points), fourth place Roberts Wesleyan University (127) and Franklin Pierce University (147) rounded out the top five. American International junior Leakey Kipkosgei won his second individual championship as he completed the 10-kilometer course in 32:38.8.

Junior Lucas Taxter (Readville, Mass./Xaverian Brothers) led Stonehill's All-Region honorees with a third-place result, finishing the course in 33:00.5. This was his first time running in the championship, as he collected his first regional accolade.

Classmate Alexander Demeule (Merrimac, Massachusetts/Pentucket Regional) followed Taxter, as he finished fourth among the 159 competitors with a time of 33:25.4. Demeule collected his second All-Region honor, as he finished 15th in last years race.

Demeule finished fourth with his second All-Region accolade (PHOTO by Nick LoVerde)

Senior captain Jimmy Murphy (Mansfield, Massachusetts/Mansfield) took ninth this year, as he finished 20th last season. Murphy crossed the finish line with a time of 33:39.1, good for his first All-Region accolade.

Running in his third regional, junior captain Riley Dowd (Peabody, Massachusetts/Peabody Veterans Memorial) placed 10th with a time of 33:55.9 and he collected his second All-Region award.

Senior captain Kenny Vinacco (Scituate, Rhode Island/Scituate) was final Skyhawk to be named to the All-Region team with his 13th-place finish and a time of 34:04.3. This was Vinacco's first regional honor.

Juniors Christopher Drace (Franklin, New Jersey/Pope John XXIII) and Lawrence Carney (Lowell, Massachusetts/Lowell) finished 26th and 37th, respectively, rounding out the Stonehill runners. Drace clocked in at 34:36.8, while Carney finished with a time of 35:15.5.

Following today's East Regional Championship, Stonehill will begin preparing for its 15th-straight ticket to the NCAA Division II Championship in Evansville, Indiana, hosted by the University of Indiana, on Saturday, November 18.

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