Sloppy weather did not prevent both the Harvard men's and women's cross country teams from dominating this weekend's Harvard-Yale-Princeton tournament at Princeton Battlefield, one of the year's biggest meets.
The men's squad (3-1) won its first Big Three title since 1993, handily disposing of Yale, 21-35, and squeaking by Princeton, 26-29, despite competing in a steady rain. It had lost to both teams earlier this year at the Fordham Invitational.
The women (4-0) had a much easier time of it in dominating the Tigers, 21-36, and the Elis, 15-48. This was the second consecutive H-Y-P win for the Crimson.
(Scores are calculated by awarding each runner the number of points equal to his standing among runners of both squads. Therefore, the team with the lower score wins).
The men were led by their usual pair of junior standouts, captain Ian Carswell and Killian Lonergan.
Carswell blew away the competition, finishing first overall with a time of 24:18 for the five-mile course, while Lonergan came in second (25:01). It was the fourth time in as many meets that the pair finished in the top three.
Seniors Matthew Bundle and Darin Shearer, who is a Crimson editor, also ran well for Harvard, finishing seventh and ninth overall, respectively.
"This was definitely our best race yet," Carswell said. "Going into this race we had a lot of frustration and intimidation about the other teams in the league. This race gave us a big boost and the feeling that we are able to run with the top teams in the league."
Junior Karen Goetze, returning to action after an injury, helped the women's squad by pulling out a three-second victory (17:53) over Princeton's Jen Gotte.
Junior Jenny Martin and freshman phenom Margaret Schotte finished third and fourth, respectively, as Harvard placed five of the top seven runners overall, despite being considerably outnumbered by both Yale and Princeton.
"It was an excellent race," Schotte said. "We had talked about shutting out Princeton [taking the first five spots], but it was still incredible."
These teams will compete against one another again at the Heptagonal Championships on October 27 at New York City's Van Cortlandt Park, the season's biggest meet which features all eight Ivy League teams and Navy.
"Hopefully, this race can propel us and give us confidence for the tournament," Carswell said.