Wood Runs 15th for Men at NWC Finals
News Release Date:
Saturday, October 29
WALLA WALLA, Wash. -- Oliver Wood placed 15th -- just missing all-conference honors -- and led Whitman College to a sixth-place team finish at the Northwest Conference Cross Country Championships Saturday morning at Willamette Mission State Park near Brooks, Ore.
Wood, a junior running his first season of collegiate cross country, finished the 8,000-meter course in 26:04.60, hitting the tape less than four seconds out of the 14th slot.
The top seven finishers earned spots on the All-NWC First team while the next seven reaped second-team honors.
"Oliver ran a good, strong race," Whitman coach Scott Shields said. "It's just too bad he missed the all-conference team by one spot."
Whitman finished sixth in the team scoring with 145 place points for its top five runners. That was seven points behind fifth-place Pacific and 21 points shy of fourth-place Lewis & Clark.
Whitworth was first with 45 points, edging Willamette by four points. Linfield was third with 84 points.
Willamette's Leo Castillo won the race in 25:02.52, beating his nearest competitor by more than 19 seconds.
"As we do with our women's team, our men are trying to peak for the regional finals in two weeks," Shields said.
"Last year we leapfrogged a couple of teams from conference to regionals, and we think we can do the same thing this year."
Running second and third on Saturday for Whitman were sophomore Michael Jorgensen (27th, 26:33.91) and freshman Colin Domonoske (30th, 26:39.75).
That was a big jump from Jorgensen, who placed 54th at last year's conference race in 27:47.
Rounding out Whitman's team score on Saturday were freshman T.C. Heydon, who was 37th in 26:50.75, and junior Taylor Mesojednik, who was 38th in 26:52.65. Mesojednik was 41st in the same race a year ago.
Also running for Whitman Saturday were junior Cory Rand (43rd, 27:02.24), senior Brendan Boyer (46th, 27:11.45), freshman Carl Garrett (50th, 27:22.37), first-year sophomore Joe Mayo (60th, 27:37.91) and freshman Alex Porter (78th, 29:09.93).
Both Rand and Boyer were running in the NWC championship race for a third time.
Rand made his best showing as a freshman, placing ninth to snag all-conference honors. He was injured for most of last season and placed 64th as a sophomore.
Boyer's finish Saturday was his best result by one place. He was 47th in at the 2009 race.
Whitman will send its top seven runners to the NCAA Division III West Region race in two weeks.
That race, which takes in Pomona, Calif., determines team and individual berths for the national championships.
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CONTACT: Dave Holden
Sports Information Director
Whitman College, Walla Walla, Wash.
509 527-5902; firstname.lastname@example.org