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Princeton cross country sends eight runners to NCAAs

<h5>Eight Tigers earn All-Region Honors at NCAA Regionals.&nbsp;</h5>
<h6>Courtesy of GoPrincetonTigers.&nbsp;</h6>
Eight Tigers earn All-Region Honors at NCAA Regionals. 
Courtesy of GoPrincetonTigers. 

On Friday, Nov. 11, both the men’s and women’s cross country teams competed in their respective NCAA Mid-Atlantic regional competitions at Penn State University, and finished with strong performances all around.

On the men’s side, the team finished third overall in the 10K with 73 points despite heavy rains. Princeton was one of 13 schools selected to advance to the NCAA Championship.

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Impressively, all seven participating runners for the Tigers finished in the Top-35, and five finished within the Top-25 to earn All-Region honors. Junior Connor Nisbet performed especially well, finishing the meet fifth overall and clocking in a new 10K personal record (PR) with a time of 30:08.8.

“Individually, I was happy with my performance. I’m in much better shape than when I ran my PR freshman year, and it gives me a lot of confidence going into NCAAs,” Nisbet wrote to The Daily Princetonian. 

Rounding out the top five for the 10K were junior Jack Stanley (30:20.7), sophomore Daniel O’Brien (20:27.9), junior Joshua Zelek (30:28.4), and junior Jarrett Kirk (30:35.0).

“The hard work for NCAAs is basically done. All we have left to do is build our excitement and confidence, make our legs feel good, and mentally prepare for a tough race,” Nisbet said. “We have high expectations for ourselves, so we have to make sure we deliver on Saturday.” 

On the women’s side, the team finished fourth as a team with 114 points. The Tigers were powered by a strong outing by senior Abby Loveys, who finished third overall in the 6K with a time of 20:11.6. 

Princeton had two additional finishers in the top-25, including junior Fiona Max (20:41.9) and junior Tsion Yared (20:52.6), with Yared recording a PR. Senior India Weir (21:21.8) and sophomore Lexi Allen (21:25.0) to round out the top five for the women’s team. 

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“Overall, the team ran really well at regionals. We came in very motivated after placing second at [Heptagonals], and I think our training came together nicely at the end. Due to injury late in the season we did lose some strength, but we gave it all we had,” Loveys wrote to the ‘Prince.’

Loveys, Max, and Yared were each named to the All-Region team, and Loveys will be headed to compete in Stillwater, Okla. for her stellar top-4 performance.

“I am very excited to run at NCAAs. This has been a goal of mine for a long time. It was first the goal to qualify as a team and I know this team has the pieces to make it happen next year,” Loveys added. “I will miss them out there, but I hope to make everyone proud.”

The NCAA championship will be held on Saturday, Nov. 19 by Oklahoma State University. 

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Eric Lee is a senior writer for the Sports section at the ‘Prince,’ Please direct any corrections requests to corrections@dailyprincetonian.com.

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