NEW ROCHELLE, NY -- For the 17th straight year, the Iona College men's cross country team will represent the NCAA Northeast Region at the NCAA Championship next weekend in Louisville, KY following today's second place showing at the regional meet in Buffalo.
The five scoring runners for the Gaels all earned All-Region honors, led by Johannes Motschmann in third place. At the 5.8k mark of the race, the senior led the race with a time of 18:53.2. He moved to third at the 7.2k mark and maintained the placement at the end of the 10k course with a time of 31:47.9. Motschmann finished just outside the top-25 and top-five for Iona last year at the regional meet.
Two additional Gaels finished with the top-10 as Liam Dee and Gilbert Kirui crossed in respectively at seventh and ninth. Dee moved up one spot over the final 2.8k of the race, finishing at 32:08.9, just ahead of a 32:11.9 time from Kirui. Kirui had moved up to fourth at the 7.2k mark before claiming his spot in ninth. Ranking 44th in the race at the 3k split, Chartt Miller climbed up 27 spots by the 5.8k marker before maintaining 12th place from the 7.2 split and on to finish at 32:16.3. Andrew Tario, the 2017 MAAC Men's Individual Champion, closed out the top-five scoring individuals for the Maroon & Gold with a 17th place showing of 32:27.8
Despite not scoring for Iona in the meet, freshmen Jack O'Leary and Ehab El-Sandali added solid effort with respective times of 32:44.4 and 32:51.7 for 28th and 31st.
Syracuse earned the top team performance of the afternoon with a meet-low 28 points that included seniors Justyn Knight and Colin Bennie finishing first and second with times of 31:43.4 and 31:44.9. The Gaels accumulated 48 points as a team, finished ahead of third place Army (218 points) and fourth place Stony Brook (222 points). Paul Hogan of UMass Lowell was the top finisher outside of Syracuse and Iona with a fourth place showing of 31:58.6.
The stage for the NCAA Division I Cross Country Championship is set in Louisville, KY at the E.P. "Tom" Sawyer State Park on Saturday, November 18. The men's 10k race is scheduled for 11:45 am ET, following the women's 6k race at 10:45 am. The Iona men have finished in the top-10 at the NCAA meet in 16 of the past 17 appearances that includes second place showing in 2007 and 2008 and 10th place finish last year.