NCAA Preview: Mammoths Capture At-Large Bid, To Make 6th Straight Nationals Appearance

NCAA Preview: Mammoths Capture At-Large Bid, To Make 6th Straight Nationals Appearance

AMHERST, Mass. – Placing all seven harriers inside the top-50 to earn fourth overall at the talent-packed New England Regionals on Nov. 17, the No. 20 Amherst College men's cross country team put forward a strong enough argument to the selection committee to capture an at-large bid to the 2019 NCAA Division III Cross Country Championships hosted by Spalding University and the Louisville Sports Commission at E.P. Tom Sawyer State Park in Louisville, Kentucky this upcoming Saturday, November 23.

With the bid, the Mammoths are set to make their sixth consecutive appearance at the national meet, and 10th overall, and will look to land inside the team top-six for the third straight fall.

Thirty-two teams were selected to participate at the NCAA's, with the top-two seven person teams from each of the eight regions (16 teams) earning automatic qualifying bids and 16 teams garnering at-large bids. In addition, fifty-six individuals, the first seven student-athletes from each region who are not a part of a qualifying team, also received bids to compete. 

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NCAA QUALIFIERS RELEASE
SPALDING UNIVERSITY (HOST) CHAMPIONSHIP INFO
GO-LOUISVILLE VISITORS BUREAU
AMHERST NCAA CHAMPIONSHIP HISTORY

USTFCCCA RANKINGS
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Consistently hitting the trails against nationally-ranked programs, the Mammoths have yet to fall outside of the top-10 against D3 competition this fall. Starting off the 2019 season on Sept. 14 at the Little III Championships, Amherst ran to a second place finish before logging 5th overall at the 19-team Purple Valley Classic two weeks later. Moving into the month of October, Amherst began with a 36th place finish at the multi-division Paul Short Classic in a Gold Division race that featured 39 DI squads before taking ninth overall at the 28-team Connecticut College Invite on Oct. 19. After opening the postseason on Nov. 2 by capturing silver at the NESCAC Championships - the fifth straight year the Mammoths have earned first or second at the annual conference meet - Amherst established its return to the NCAA Championships with a strong showing at the New England Regionals two weeks later on Nov. 16 as they fought their way to fourth overall and a national's at-large bid.

With two of the seven harriers currently set to compete having Championship experience, this crop of Mammoths' is eager to make their mark on the national stage and add to the program's list impressive performances at the season closing meet. With a 74th place finish (25:25.6) last fall, Ajay Sarathy '21 enters the weekend looking to once again make a big impact on the scoresheet, while Spencer Ferguson-Dryden '20 will aim to improve upon the 111th place finish (25:33.48) he captured in 2017. Bill Massey '21 (25:29.3), Jamie Mazzola '21 (25:06.3), Owen Daily '22 (25:42.6), Braxton Schuldt '21 (25:08.2) and Keon Mazdisnian '23 (25:13.4) enter the mix as newcomers and hit the trail in their first NCAA Championships appearance with the intention of saving the best for last and erasing previous personal-record marks.

The men will open this year's Championships, with the qualifiers for the 8-kilometer race slated to begin at 10:45 AM EST this Saturday, Nov. 23 at E.P. Tom Sawyer State Park.

AMHERST HARRIERS

  Little III's Purple Valley Paul Short Conn. Invite NESCAC's DIII NE's
Spencer Ferguson-Dryden '20 19:26.20 / 9th 27:12.3 / 16th 24:49.7 / 136th 25:07.0 / 16th 26:13.7 / 14th 25:10.6 / 11th 
Bill Massey '21 19:49.37 / 19th -- 25:29.3 / 258th 25:29.5 / 41st 26:25.1 / 18th 25:30.6 / 21st 
Jamie Mazzola '21 19:31.07 / 11th 27:28.6 / 35th 25:06.3 / 198th 25:50.5 / 68th 26:29.0 / 19th 25:58.8 / 42nd 
Ajay Sarathy '21 19:43.91 / 17th 28:45.8 / 94th -- 26:04.2 / 96th 26:50.2 / 36th 26:01.5 / 45th 
Braxton Schuldt '21 19:40.48 / 13th 27:27.9 / 33rd 25:08.2 / 202nd 25:44.5 / 58th 26:23.6 / 17th  25:33.7 / 24th
Matthew Bradley '22 # 20:03.74 / 26th 28:10.7 / 63rd 25:53.2 / 311th 25:57.0 / 81st 27:50.8 / 86th -- 
Owen Daily '22 20:04.18 / 27th 28:18.6 / 70th 25:42.6 / 296th 26:01.1 / 90th 26:41.9 / 31st 26:03.4 / 46th 
Braedon Fiume '23 # 19:53.95 / 20th 28:33.7 / 81st 25:56.1 / 316th 26:09.7 / 106th 27:05.0 / 49th -- 
Keon Mazdisnian '23 20:02.52 / 25th 27:37.9 / 42nd 25:13.4 / 216th 25:58.0 / 83rd 26:54.8 / 38th 25:55.3 / 39th 
TEAM 2nd of 3 5th of 19 36th of 45 9th of 28 2nd of 11 4th of 54 


* Bold Denotes Top Mammoths Finish at Meet
# Denotes Alternate
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