Women’s Cross Country NCAA Division II Championship Preview

Skyhawks look to finish strong after NE10 and regionals performances

NCAA Division II Cross Country Championship Central

Knox won her second-straight individual title this season at the East Regional Championship

EASTON, Mass. (November 17, 2017) – The Stonehill College women's cross country team, ranked second in the East Regional poll put on by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) will compete in its 18th-straight trip to the NCAA Division II Championships this Saturday at Angel Mounds in Evansville, Indiana. The women's six-kilometer race will begin at 10:15 a.m., while the men's squad will compete in the 10-kilometer race at 11:30 a.m.

Tickets for the races will be sold at the gate on race day. Prices will be $10 for adults, $5 for children, and free admission for children ages five and under. For those who will not be making the races, NCAA cross country fans can watch the live streams of the CNAA Cross Country Championships as FloTrack Pro subscribers for a monthly price of $19.99 or an annual price of $150. The subscription will include access to all FloTrack live broadcasts, video on-demand from all events, documentaries, technique videos and more. Free replay of all three championships will be available on-demand on FloTrack.com afterwards.

Stonehill finished as the runner-up to Assumption College at the NCAA Division II East Regional Championship two weekends ago by one point. The Skyhawks totaled 46 points, while the Greyhounds combined for 45 points. Senior Emily Knox (Worcester, Massachusetts/Notre Dame Academy) collected her second title of the year as she finished the race with a time of 22:43.6, good for her third-career All-Region honor. Knox was also later recognized as the NCAA Division II East Region Athlete of the Year. Three other runners also earned All-East Region honors including, Makenzie Cyr (Douglas, Massachusetts/Douglas) who place sixth, Sam Curtin (Plymouth, Massachusetts/Plymouth North) finishing seventh, and Alyssa Freeman (Billerica, Massachusetts/Billerica Memorial) who took home 12th place.

To qualify for regionals, Stonehill won its 16th Northeast-10 Championship out in Westfield, Massachusetts, in dominating fashion, placing seven runners in the top 21 overall, and finishing ahead of the runners-up by a mere two points. Seven Stonehill athletes earned All-Conference accolades, Knox was named Women's Cross Country Athlete of the Year, and Curtin was tabbed as the NE10 Rookie of the Year. Head coach Karen Boen won her 51st and 52nd Coach of the Year Award by winning the men's and women's title.

Senior co-captain Knox, a three-time All-Northeast-10 and All-Region honoree, is coming off a career-best first-place finish at the NE10 Championships and East Regional Championship. She captured the program's third-straight individual title in both events, which Nicole Borofski '17 won back-to-back years previously. This was the fourth time in NE10 conference history that a school has won individual titles three-straight years, with Springfield leading the way with six-straight individual titles spanning from 1987-92. The Worcester, Massachusetts native also finished as the runner up at the Division II/III Challenge earlier this year. Knox will be competing in her third regional championship this year.

Classmate and co-captain Abby Hersom (Rockland, Maine/Oceanside) runs in her second NCAA competition, as she finished 48th at the East Regional Championship two weekends ago. She also placed a career-best ninth at the NE10 Championship this season. Earlier in the season, she finished in 15th place back-to-back at the Division II/III Challenge and the Codfish Bowl.

Curtin was the first freshman across the line at the East Regional Championship

Junior Makenzie Cyr (Douglas, Massachusetts/Douglas), who will be appearing in her second championship, crossed the finish line as the second Skyhawk at the East Regional Championship and NE10 Championship. She captured sixth at the Regional for her third All-Region honor and third at the Conference Championship for her third-career All-Conference honor. Previously this season, she finished 32nd at the New England Championship and sixth at the Division II/III Challenge.

Anna Lastra (Bridgton, Maine/Fryeburg Academy) will compete in her second championship, as she placed 108th as a freshman last year. At the East Regional, Lastra finished 38th, while she placed 21st at the NE10 Championship and fifth at the Codfish Bowl. Classmate Alyssa Freeman (Billerica, Massachusetts/Billerica Memorial) earned her spot on the line with her 12th-place mark at the East Regional Championship and 14th-place finish at the NE10 Championship for her first All-Region and NE10 All-Conference. This season, she also placed fourth at the Shacklette Invitational and 18th at the Division II/III Challenge.

Curtin, who will be competing in her first NCAA Championship this weekend finished seventh and as the first freshman across the line. Previously, she placed 19th at the NE10 Championships, and has posted three other top-20 marks this season. Classmate Sophia Anderle (Peabody, Massachusetts/Peabody Veterans Memorial) also impressed this season with a 28th-place mark at the East Regional and a 12th-place finish at the NE10 Championship as the first freshman across the finish line. She also collected three top-30 marks this season, including a 10th-place tally at the Shacklette Invitational.

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