At cross country’s Pre-Nationals meet in Terre Haute, Ind. on Saturday, Harvard’s men’s and women’s teams tried similar strategies but achieved different results.
Paced by senior Sean Barrett, who finished No. 6 with a time of 25:06 in the 8000 meters, the Harvard men came out on top in the Open division with a tournament-low 61 points, winning for the first time this season and exacting revenge on Yale. The Crimson lost a dual meet to the Elis at Boston’s Franklin Park on Sept. 22.
All seven men’s runners finished within 38 seconds of Barrett, who crossed the finish line 58 seconds after winner David Kemboi of Norfolk State.
The Crimson women placed their top five finishers within 18 seconds of junior Sarah Bourne, who completed the 6000-meter women’s open in a time of 22:39. But the Harvard women needed more than finish-line continuity to pace the field: junior Lindsey Scherf missed her second race due to injury since the Sept. 30 Iona Meet of Champions as the Crimson finished sixth.
MEN’S CROSS COUNTRY
After Barrett and junior Andrew Lipkin (25:15), three more Harvard runners completed the Pre-Nationals open division race essentially one after the other.
Junior Ryan Hafer (25:25), freshman Ben Gutierrez (25:25), and senior Tim Galebach (25:27) stayed together nearly the entire race, according to Hafer.
“We haven’t done that a lot before,” Hafer said. “We were really able to work together.”
The Crimson was additionally motivated, Hafer said, by the prospect of revenge against Yale.
“We wanted to beat them,” he said. But he added, “We’re wanting to beat a lot more teams than Yale this year.”
Juniors Christopher Green (25:38) and Brian Holmquest (25:44) rounded out the Harvard qualifiers.
WOMEN’S CROSS COUNTRY
The women’s cross country team also kept together, finishing a respectable No. 6 out of 13.
Twins Jessica Bryant (22:44) and Tara Bryant (22:57)—both sophomores—freshmen Stacy Carlson (22:47) and Audrey Mangan (22:55), and senior Leslie Irvine (24:16) followed Bourne to the finish line.
“I guess we ran in a pack, as a team, which was what we wanted to do,” Jessica Bryant said, calling it “really good because you can also help each other along.”
The team missed standout Lindsey Scherf for the second straight tournament since the Sept. 30 Iona Meet of Champions, where the junior finished No. 10 overall, because of “injury-related setbacks” Scherf wrote in an email that she hopes to make the final championship events of the season, including the Heptagonals in New York, N.Y. on Oct. 27.
Bryant said she hoped the team would be ready for the month’s upcoming events.
“The most important races are coming up,” she said.
—Staff writer Alex McPhillips can be reached at email@example.com.