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Men's and women's cross country teams take CAA titles

  • Complete perfection
    Complete perfection
    William & Mary's women's cross country team, ranked No. 18 in the country, defended its Colonial Athletic Association title Nov. 2 with the first-ever perfect score in conference history.
    Photo courtesy of W&M Athletics
  • 2013 Championship Team - Men's
    2013 Championship Team - Men's
    2013 Title makes it 14 consecutive championships for Men's Cross Country.
    Photo courtesy of W&M Athletics

For William & Mary’s cross-country teams, last weekend was a combination of perfection and domination.

The women's team, ranked 18th in the country, defended its Colonial Athletic Association title Saturday with the first-ever perfect score in conference history. Meanwhile, the men’s team won its 14th CAA championship in a row, and 21st overall, Saturday.

The Tribe women went 1-5 and placed seven women in the top-10 to score 15 points and defeat the rest of the field.  This was the Tribe's 19th CAA title all-time, tied with Portland for the fourth-most ever in Division I.

Tribe All-American Elaina Balouris ‘14 repeated as the individual champion, finishing in 21:17.11 just a stride ahead of All-American Emily Stites ‘16 in 21:17.30.

Balouris is the first woman to win back-to-back conference titles since the Tribe's Emily Anderson '10 in 2008 and 2009.  Michelle Britto ‘14 took the bronze medal in 21:36.73, and Meghan McGovern ‘16 was fourth in 21:44.61. Dylan Hassett ‘15 completed the sweep in fifth place, crossing the finish line in 21:52.23.

Also earning all-conference honors was Carolyn Hennessey ‘15, who took sixth in 22:15.64. Leading the way for the Tribe men once again was Rad Gunzenhauser ‘14, who finished second overall in 24:46.56.  Trevor Sleight ‘17 was the bronze medalist in 25:05.17, the best finish for a true freshman since All-American Christo Landry '08 was second in 2004.  Ryan Gousse ’16 was fifth in 25:16.66, and David Barney ‘16 was sixth overall in 25:26.64.

Nathaniel Hermsmeier ’15 rounded out the scoring in ninth place at 25:49.87, and Joshua Mercado '14 and Faris Sakallah ’17 also joined on the all-conference team in 10th place and 11th place, respectively.

The Tribe's run of 14 consecutive conference titles is tied for the second-longest active streak in the nation. Between the CAA and Southern Conference combined, W&M has 36 conference championships, third-most in NCAA history. The Tribe's 21 CAA championships is more than any men’s team in conference history, and second overall behind the W&M women's tennis team’s 22.

Both teams will host the annual Massey Cancer Center 5K, which has raised more than $100,000 for cancer research and treatment at MCV's Massey Center.  The run/walk fundraiser will begin at 5:15 p.m. at Zable Stadium on Friday, Nov. 8, and participants and donors can sign up and pledge at Massey5k.com.

31st CAA women’s Championships - 8K
Oregon Ridge State Park - Cockeysville, Md.

Team Standings
1. William and Mary 15
2. James Madison 81
3. Delaware 86
4. Northeastern 106
5. College of Charleston 150
6. Towson 155
7. UNCW 159
8. Hofstra 229

All-Conference Team
1. Elaina Balouris (W&M) 21:17.11
2. Emily Stites (W&M) 21:17.30
3. Michelle Britto (W&M) 21:36.73
4. Meghan McGovern (W&M) 21:44.61
5. Dylan Hassett (W&M) 21:52.23
6. Lucy Young (NU) 22:06.27
7. Carolyn Hennessey (W&M) 22:15.64
8. Elizbaeth Tauber (TU) 22:16.09
9. Emily Gispert (UD) 22:17.95
10. Erica Amatori (W&M) 22:27.04
11. Meghan Malloy (JMU) 22:44.23
12. Tessa Mundell (JMU) 22:50.32

31st CAA men’s championships - 8K
Oregon Ridge State Park - Cockeysville, Md.

Team Standings
1. William and Mary 25
2. Northeastern 44
3. UNCW 89
4. College of Charleston 106
5. Hofstra 115

All-Conference Team
1. Wes Gallagher (NU) 24:42.02
2. Rad Gunzenhauser (W&M) 24:46.56
3. Trevor Sleight (W&M) 25:05.17
4. Zach Krause (NU) 25:13.12
5. Ryan Gousse (W&M) 25:16.66
6. David Barney (W&M) 25:26.64
7. Zach Fraielli (NU) 25:31.18
8. Daniel Rono (HU) 25:42.69
9. Nathaniel Hermsmeier (W&M) 25:49.87
10. Joshua Mercado (W&M) 25:54.73
11. Faris Sakallah (W&M) 25:57.50
12. Adam Seften (CofC) 26:05.17