Atlantic, Central, Great Lakes, Mideast written by Hannah Thorn
Midwest, New England, South, West written by Brett Haffner
SUNY Geneseo is the class of this field after winning the SUNYAC Championships. They are led by star Sean McAneny who should be looking to win a regional title this weekend. Geneseo had a 25 second spread between their scoring runners at their conference meet, which bodes well as they head into larger meets like Regionals and Nationals.
Liberty League champions RPI comes into this meet hoping to nab the second automatic qualifier over conference foes St. Lawrence. Both teams were pretty equal at the conference meet until their final scorer. RPI had Johnny Capobianco finish in 11th to round out their scoring while St. Lawrence had to wait for Jackson Hamilton to cross the line almost a minute later in 30th. If St. Lawrence does not want to wait for an at-large bid to come their way then they will have to close that gap massively.
Ithaca and SUNY Oneonta will be another two teams who will be fighting for at-large bids from this region. Ithaca finished 3rd at the Liberty League Championships. Junior Chris Singer won the individual title, but it wasn’t enough to vault his team past RPI and St. Lawrence. The senior-heavy team grouped up nicely from 2-3-4-5-6 with only a 23 second spread, but they were just too far back to make a difference.
SUNY Oneonta had a similar fate has they had Ethan McDonald finish 3rd and had the rest of the runners group up nicely with a 20 second spread between their bottom four scorers. Unfortunately, they were just overwhelmed with Geneseo’s firepower as they finished 2nd at the SUNYAC Championships.
Both Ithaca and SUNY Oneonta will be relying on their #1 runners to finish as high as possible as the rest of the group battles. I predict a close battle with Ithaca coming out on top as their #6 runner is closer to their #5 runner than Oneonta’s, so if someone has an off day the damage is limited.
1. SUNY Geneseo
3. St. Lawrence
5. SUNY Oneonta
1. Sean McAneny (SUNY Geneseo)
2. Sean Kuehn (Brockport)
3. Jacob Davis (RPI)
4. Ethan McDonald (SUNY Oneonta)
5. Luke Holtzman (SUNY Geneseo)
6. Lucas Sutton (SUNY Geneseo)
7. Chris Singer (Ithaca)
8. Dadly Ogetti (St. Lawrence)
9. Joe Domanico (RPI)
10. Evan Page (St. Lawrence)
Wartburg vs. the MIAC in the Central region. Wartburg has been led by the strong duo of Joe Freigburger and Sam Pinkowski all season. That did not change as they handily won the American River conference meet. They had a 33 second spread between their top five, with their final two runners no more than 15 seconds behind. That strong pack should easily win them this region.
After a delayed start to the season Lucas Mueller is back. He ran 24:59 to place 2nd behind teammate Matt Wilkinson’s 24:37. This is the fastest Mueller has run all year by a minute so he is starting to get into peak shape at the right time. He still has a ways to go if he wants to be an All-American again, but this is encouraging sign for him and the team. The Carleton men won the MIAC going 1-2-8-19-20. What doesn’t look good is their spread was a minute and 33 seconds. That needs to tighten up if they want to compete team wise at Regionals or Nationals.
St. Thomas (Minn.) men had a good race for 2nd over rivals St Olaf who took 3rd. St. Thomas was led by Karl Wachter who has been having a breakout season. Wachter finished 3rd to the Carleton duo. He is the clear leader of this team finishing 25 seconds ahead of their #2 runner, George McGivern. The whole spread was 1:05 which needs to come together if the Tommies want to beat St.Olaf once again.
St.Olaf does not want that to happen and their leader Sean Lonergan is hoping to lead them past the Tommies. For that to happen, their #5 runner needs to move up as Derk Lyford finished 27th to round out their scoring. Since St.Olaf does not have the firepower of Wartburg, Carleton, or St. Thomas, they need to have a better pack.
Another runner to look out for is Tom Altier from Luther. The sophomore finished 2nd to Joe Freigburger at the American Rivers conference meet. After finishing 30th at this meet last year, Altier looks to move up and secure his first trip to Nationals.
1. Joe Freiburger, Wartburg
2. Matt Wilkinson (Carleton)
3. Lucas Mueller (Carleton)
4. Tom Altier (Luther)
5. Karl Wachter (St. Thomas)
6. Sam Pinkowski (Wartburg)
7. Morgan Shirley-Fairbairn (Wartburg)
8. Sam Primozich (St. Olaf)
9. Nate Sanders (Central College)
10. Fernando Benitez (Hamline)
The team with the best chance to take home the title is Calvin. They placed 6th at KollegeTown against some very talented teams. Their strength lies in the duality of having a quality low-stick in junior Jonathan Ellis and being able to pack up through five runners. At the MIAAC (Michigan) conference meet, Calvin was able to put up a perfect score against teams like Trine, Albion, and Hope. They should have no trouble qualifying for Nationals.
The team that hopes to play spoiler to Calvin’s regional team title chances is Otterbein. They are led by Chase Hampton who won the Ohio Athletic conference meet and has consistently been their #1 runner. He looks to be trending upwards after having a less than ideal start to the season.
They have a strong pack in their final four scoring spots with a spread of only 32 seconds at their conference meet. This helped them with their conference meet over John Caroll and Mount Union. If they can get runners 3-4-5 closer to the front, then they have a chance to bring home the team title.
A team that hopes to fight for an automatic bid is John Carroll. They lost 41 to 44 at the Ohio Athletic conference meet to Otterbein. They seem to be led by a different guy in every race and their conference meet was no different. Freshman Alex Phillip stepped up to take 2nd to Hampton. John Caroll had a rough start to the season, losing to many teams in their region. So if they hope to make it to Nationals, it would be safer for them to place 2nd than rely on an at-large bid.
Case Western and Mount Union round out the top five. Case Western is led by Trey Razanasuskas. He placed 4th at the UAA conference meet behind strong runners from Chicago, Wash U., and Carnegie Mellon. Similarly, the team placed 4th behind those three squads. The problem with Case Western is that their 2-3-4-5 runners are just too far behind Razanauskas for the team to make much noise.
With Mount Union, they are led by sophomore Preston Meyers and freshman Jeff Joseph which is exciting for their future, but not ideal right now. They placed 3rd at the Ohio Athletic conference meet, but had their 3-4-5 runners 30 seconds to a minute behind their top two runners. This limits them and will be a struggle if they hope to make it to Nationals this year.
3. John Caroll
4. Case Western
5. Mount Union
1. Jonathan Ellis, Calvin
2. Chase Hampton, Otterbein
3. Trey Razanauskas, Case Western
4. Tyler Johnson, Calvin
5. Alex Philip, John Carroll
6. Austin Neura, Heidelberg
7. Max Hoffman, Otterbein
8. Justin Varineau, Calvin
9. Jamie Dailey, John Carroll
10. Cole Martin, DePauw
The Mideast region brings us two of the top teams in the nation. One of those teams is Carnegie Mellon. The men from Carnegie Mellon beat talented squads from Wash U. and U. of Chicago, 39 to 43 to 71 at the UAA conference meet. The CM men had a 20 second gap among their top five, with their next two runners not too far behind. Carnegie Mellon might not have a top-tier low-stick, but they have a tight interchangeable pack that could benefit them this championship season.
The other team that is expected to challenge Carnegie Mellon is Johns Hopkins. At the Centennial conference meet, Johns Hopkins earned a perfect score. Like Carnegie Mellon, they kept their spread low, 27 seconds between their top five. If you take out TSR #6 Jared Pangallozzi, their gap shrinks to 10 seconds between the rest of their scorers. In other words, they have a lethal combo of depth and firepower which could benefit them in the coming weeks.
Other teams that have a chance to make it to Nationals from this region are Haverford and Dickinson. Both teams' front-runners aren’t as strong as the low-sticks that we've seen from Johns Hopkins and Carnegie Mellon, but their depth will keep them up towards the front of this race. Elizabethtown has an outside chance, but they would need a great performance on Saturday and some help from other teams across the country if they wish to qualify.
Patrick Watson from Stevenson will be racing to solidify his status as national title hopeful. His team does not have much of a chance to qualify, but this will be a good chance for Watson to race against some of the top men in the country one week before Nationals.
1. Carnegie Mellon
2. Johns Hopkins
1. Patrick Watson (Stevenson)
2. Jared Pangalozzi (Johns Hopkins)
3. Andrew King (Johns Hopkins)
4. Josh Kalapos (Carnegie Mellon)
5. Samuel Gerstenbacher (Elizabethtown)
6. Mathew Karee (Carnegie Mellon)
7. Connor Delahunty (Johns Hopkins)
8. Evan Yukevich (Carnegie Mellon)
9. Bryce Descavish (Dickinson)
10. Christopher Scharfs (Dickinson)
North Central is the team to beat in this star-studded region, where we could see upwards of five or six teams potentially qualify for Nationals. Coming off of winning their 46th consecutive CCIW title, the Cardinals are looking very solid heading into the postseason. Their only concern would be that their #2 man Alec Beutel (TSR #14) did not run at conference. Even if he doesn’t run this weekend, the Cardinals will be just fine, as they utilized a deep pack at their conference meet.
Wash U. is coming off of a narrow loss at the hands of Carnegie Mellon at the UAA Championships, but they still looked solid even without regular scorer Jack Sebok. With low-stick Nick Matteucci (TSR #3) challenging for the individual title, if the Bears run all of their usual scorers healthy, they should put up a good challenge to NCC for the regional win.
U. of Chicago has been looking solid all year, capped off by a solid 3rd place showing at the UAA Championships behind Carnegie Mellon and Wash U. Ryan Cutter (TSR #8) will be fighting up front as he has been all year. The Maroons will need some good scoring potency after Cutter, but if they can get that from the rest of their scorers, they could find themselves in the top three.
Rounding out the top Midwestern teams, UW-La Crosse packs a big punch with their duo of Joshua Schraeder (TSR #5) and Tyler Nault (TSR #4). Behind those two, the rest of their guys will need to keep their spread as small as possible. At a muddy WIAC meet, they had a 62 second spread through five scorers. If they can close that spread to around 30 to 40 seconds, they will be dangerous.
For the individual race, it’ll be a battle of the low-sticks featuring Matteucci, Cutter, Nault, Schraeder, Matt Osmulski of North Central (TSR #7), and David Fassbender of UW-Whitewater (TSR #12). It’s the first time this year we’ve seen all of these guys do battle. Who will come out on top? It could be a toss up between any of these guys, they’ve been trading blows all year.
Matteucci has beaten Cutter, Cutter has beaten Matteucci.
Cutter has beaten Osmulski, Osmulski has beaten Cutter.
Nault has beaten Schraeder, Schraeder has beaten Nault.
Nault and Schraeder have both beaten Fassbender.
In team battle, as well as the individual battle, this will be one of the more exciting regional meets of the weekend.
1. North Central
2. Wash. U.
3. UW-La Crosse
4. U. of Chicago
1. Joshua Schraeder (UW-La Crosse)
2. Nick Matteucci (Wash U.)
3. Tyler Nault (UW-La Crosse)
4. Ryan Cutter (U. of Chicago)
5. Matt Osmulski (North Central)
6. David Fassbeder (UW-Whitewater)
7. Alec Beutel (North Central)
8. Marco Quaroni (Wash U.)
9. Gabriel Pommier (North Central)
10. Michael Friedman (UW-Stout)
Williams leads this region and they’ve been looking like the team to beat all season. In winning their Purple Valley Invite, the Connecticut College Invite, as well as the NESCAC meet, they haven’t seen much of a threat quite yet. That will be saved for the national meet.
First, though, they must get through their regional meet, which shouldn’t be much of a problem. Depending on how close their pack is to Aidan Ryan (TSR #1), we either could see a dominating win or a solid win for the Ephs. Probably nothing less...
This is a very young team for the Engineers of MIT. They’ve seen upwards of four freshmen score for them on different occasions, and are led by sophomore Andrew Mah. This young, deep team has put up the biggest challenge to Williams thus far, taking 2nd to the Ephs at both the Purple Valley and Connecticut College invites. They should pose a good challenge to Willians once again this weekend.
Both hailing from the NESCAC, Amherst and Middlebury will be some of the next teams behind the top two. These two teams finished only 10 points apart at their conference meet, with Amherst taking the runner-up position behind Williams, utilizing a 38 second split among their top five runners. Middlebury has a solid low-stick in Theo Henderson, but they’ll need their other scorers to be closer to him.
These teams could be competing for an at-large bid for the national meet with good races.
As for the individual race, this is Aidan Ryan’s race to lose. However, Danny Aschale had something to say about that at the Connecticut College Invite, posing a good challenge to Ryan’s dominance, but ultimately taking 2nd to the undefeated ace.
1. Aidan Ryan (Williams)
2. Danny Aschale (Connecticut College)
3. Theo Henderson (Middlebury)
4. Nick Gannon (Williams)
5. Andrew Mah (MIT)
6. Elias Lindgren (Williams)
7. Trevor Wysong (Bridgewater State)
8. Ryan Cox (Williams)
9. William McGovern (Williams)
10. Sanjay Raman (MIT)
Berea has won their last two meets: the Oberlin Inter-Regional Rumble and the USA South Championships...and they are getting better and better in each meet. Logan McKenzie has been a solid low0stick for the Mountaineers, and can contend well with some of the better names in the region. If they can employ a spread equal or better than their 31 seconds from their conference meet, they’ll be among the top two teams on Saturday.
The Emory Eagles have a tough conference meet at the UAA Championships, so their 5th place finish isn’t too concerning. At Pre-Nats, they finished only 17 points behind Berea in a big field...but how will that change in a smaller field? Low-stick Jack Whetstone could contend for the regional win, and their pack has seen different names finish in their #2 and #3 slots each meet. If their scorers can contend with Berea’s pack, it will be a close team battle between the two squads.
Washington and Lee, as well as Lynchburg, had a good battle at the ODAC, with W&L taking the win, 31 to 39. W&L made use of a solid 34 second spread at their conference meet, while Lynchburg’s team featured a breakout race from Maximillian Sparks, who took the win by a nice 15 second margin. If either of these two teams could get close to either Emory or Berea, we could see a potential upset.
For the individual battle, Toler Freyaldenhoven should be the name to beat. He had a breakout race at Pre-Nats taking 2nd in a very strong field, his 8th place at the Oberlin Inter-Regional Rumble arose some questions, and he came back with a strong win in his conference meet. Him and Whetstone should have a nice battle for the title.
3. Washington and Lee
1. Toler Freyaldenhoven (Rhodes)
2. Jack Whetstone (Emory)
3. Logan McKenzie (Berea)
4. Tanner Carson (Berea)
5. Michael Myers (Southern Virginia)
6. Spencer Moore (Emory)
7. Maximillian Sparks (Lynchburg)
8. Daniel Cope (Washington and Lee)
9. Austin Stallings (Centre)
10. Jeff Gibson (Mary Washington)
The rivalry between Claremont-Mudd-Scripps and Pomona Pitzer has been as exciting as ever this year, with both teams taking decisive victories over one another.
The most recent skirmish between those two teams was at the SCIAC meet, which resulted in a tie at 31 points. The Stags of CMS ultimately won on a tie-breaker, but this race only solidified that these two teams are both equal forces to be reckoned with.
For the Stags, Thomas D’Anieri is looking like a strong low-stick, taking down Pomona Pitzer’s Ethan Widlansky (TSR #15) for the conference title. Miles Christensen, Kyril van Schendel, and Stevie Steinberg once again looked very solid as a pack, and freshman Henry Pick stepped up big time to finish just behind that group. They’ve looked really good all year, but the only question is how well will they fare against the rest of the nation? We’ll find out in Louisville.
The Sagehens of Pomona Pitzer already have shown that they can compete with the rest. Their 2nd place performance at the KollegeTown Sports Invite was very impressive. They still ran well at SCIAC's, putting eight men inside the top 15, and 11 in the top 20, showcasing some crazy depth. The loss to CMS must have hurt, but they’ll get another chance to do battle at on Saturday.
Behind these two powerhouses, UC Santa Cruz and Colorado College are two teams that should fare well in a battle for 3rd.
Individually, D’Anieri and Widlansky should put up another good battle as it is a tossup between these two. CMS’ pack of Christensen, van Schendel, and Steinberg, should contend with Owen Keiser, Daniel Rosen, and Joseph Hesse-Withbroe of Pomona Pitzer.
One name we haven’t mentioned is Tucker Cargile of Redlands. He finished 4th at SCIAC's, and he could certainly compete for another top five finish in a similar field.
2. Pomona Pitzer
3. UC Santa Cruz
4. Colorado College
1. Ethan Widlansky (Pomona Pitzer)
2. Thomas D’Anieri (Claremont-Mudd-Scripps)
3. Owen Keiser (Pomona Pitzer)
4. Miles Christensen (Claremont-Mudd-Scripps)
5. Tucker Cargile (Redlands)
6. Stevie Steinberg (Claremont-Mudd-Scripps)
7. Kyril van Schendel (Claremont-Mudd-Scripps)
8. Joseph Hesse-Withbroe (Pomona Pitzer)
9.Daniel Rosen (Pomona Pitzer)
10. Colin Monaghan (Puget Sound)