Skyhawks Clinch Ninth-Straight Trip To Nationals

Polito finishes third overall, Stonehill earns four All-East Region Team honors 

Senior Stephen Polito finished third overall to guide Stonehill to its ninth-
NCAA Division Championships.

DORCHESTER, Mass. (November 6, 2011) – The Stonehill College men's cross country team, ranked 19th overall in the latest U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) Division II national poll and first in the East Regional poll, clinched its ninth-straight trip to the NCAA Division II Championships with a second place team finish at the NCAA Division II East Regionals on Sunday at Franklin Park. 

UMass Lowell claimed the team title scoring 71 points while Stonehill finished second with 77 points. The Northeast-10 Conference (NE-10) took the next four spots and 1-6 overall as Bentley University ranked third (96 points), Adelphi University finished fourth (107 points), American International placed fifth (155 points) and Southern Connecticut State University finished sixth (187 points). 

"We knew it was going to be tough for us to qualify today with this deep field but our younger guys really stepped up to get us back to the NCAA's," said head coach Karen Boen." "Dan Gordon and Scott Waller had a huge day for us; it's a great accomplishment to be going back to the NCAA's." 

Senior Stephen Polito (Worcester, Mass./Doherty Memorial), who earned his second career All-East Region Team honor, completed the 10-kilometer course in 31:30.4 to finish third overall and lead the Skyhawks to their second place finish as a team. 

After Polito crossed the finish line, Stonehill's youth was on display as the Skyhawks next four runners to place were either freshmen or sophomores. 

Sophomores Paul Cina (Pembroke, Mass./Pembroke) and Scott Waller (Andover, Mass./Andover) placed 12th and 13th overall in identical times of 32:09.09, respectively. 

Freshman Daniel Gordon (Plymouth, Mass./Plymouth North) crossed the finish line in a time of 32 minutes and 42.4 seconds for 22nd place overall while sophomore Trent Fontanella (Pelham, N.H./Bishop Guertin) placed 27th overall in 32:46.9. 

Cina, Waller and Gordon all earned their first career All-East Region Team honors with their top-25 performances on the afternoon. 

Senior Corey Donahoe (Billerica, Mass./Billerica Memorial) and sophomore Michael Amirault (Walpole, Mass./Xaverian Brothers) rounded out Stonehill's top-seven as Donahoe finished 28th overall in 32:50.2 and Amirault placed 29th overall in 32:52.3. 

The Stonehill College men's team, coming off its second NE-10 title in its last three seasons two weeks ago, will be joined by the women's squad at the NCAA Division II Championship on Saturday, November 19 in Spokane, Washington at Plantes Ferry Regional Park at time to be determined later. 

The women's team claimed its third-straight NCAA Division II East Regional team title and secured its 12th-straight trip to the NCAA Division II Championships this afternoon scoring 57 points, 42 points better than second place Bentley University. 

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