Willamette Women's Team Receives At-Large Bid to NCAA Championships

Bennett will Represent Bearcats in Men's Title Race

By Robert McKinney, Athletics Communications Director, (503) 370-6110

SALEM, ORE. -- The Willamette University women's cross country team has been selected for an at-large bid to the NCAA Division III National Championships, which will be held on Saturday, Nov. 17 at the LaVern Gibson Course in Terre Haute, Ind.

Willamette will be one of 32 teams competing for the women's team title as well as running for the individual championship. The Bearcats earned third place in the NCAA West Regional. Michaela Freeby (So., Milwaukie, OR/Rex Putnam HS) led the Bearcats with a ninth place finish.

The Willamette men's team, which finished fourth in the West Regional, was not chosen for the NCAA National Championships, but junior runner Parker Bennett (Sisters, OR/Sisters HS) was selected to compete as an individual. Bennett placed sixth at the West Region Championships.

The top two men's teams and the top two women's teams from each of the eight NCAA Regionals received automatic bids to the NCAA Championships. A total of 16 at-large bids to each championship race also were awarded.

In addition, individual bids went to the top seven men and the top seven women in each regional whose teams were not selected for the NCAA Championships.

Joining Willamette with team entries from the West Region into the NCAA women's championship are Claremont-Mudd-Scripps (Calif.), which won the West Region title, and Lewis & Clark College, which finished in second place.

Individual at-large entries from the West Region women's race are Evie Borchard from the University of California-Santa Cruz, Megan Lang from Occidental College (Calif.), Lenore Moreno from the University of La Verne (Calif.), Erin Morrow from Colorado College, Rachel Schreiber from Pacific University, Melissa Skiba from California Lutheran University, and Christine Verduzco from Whittier College.

Men's team entries from the West are Claremont-Mudd-Scripps, which won the regional championship, Pomona-Pitzer, which took second place and La Verne, which claimed third place.

In addition to Bennett, other individuals from the West Region chosen for the NCAA National Championships are Nick Hall of Colorado College, Tyler Hoyt from UC-Santa Cruz, Louis Jochems from Occidental, Matt Klein from the University of Puget Sound, Tyler Shipley of Pacific, and Colin Smith from Occidental.

The NCAA Championships are scheduled to begin on Saturday with the men's 8-kilometer race at 11 a.m. EST/8 a.m. PST. The women's race is scheduled to start at 12 p.m. EST/9 a.m. PST. Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology is hosting the event.

NCAA Division III
National Championships
Hosted by Rose-Hulman
At LaVern Gibson Course
Saturday, Nov. 17, 2012
The Willamette women's cross country team has been selected to compete at the NCAA Championships,

The Willamette women's cross country team has been selected to compete at the NCAA Championships,