Centre men's cross country team makes nationals

November 14, 2004

ATLANTA - The Centre College cross country team will send a team to the Division III national championships for the first time in school history after the Centre men finished second in an NCAA regional meet Saturday.

Three Centre runners finished in the top 20 to help Centre earn one of the two qualifying spots at the South/Southeast Regional at Emory.

Centre had been ranked between first and third in its region all season and entered the regional at No. 3.

"The guys wanted this all along, and we knew we were real close," Centre coach Lisa Owens said. "We just had have one of those great days to pull it together.

"They ran a solid race today, did what I asked them to do and came out on top."

Meanwhile, sophomore Eileen Schilling earned her second straight second-place finish in the region and another trip to the national meet.


Schilling ran her best 6-kilometer time ever at 22 minutes, 56 seconds on a muddy course, finishing second only to Agnes Scott's Phyliss Tuggle, a 42-year-old former professional athlete who won with a time of 21:49.

Schilling earned All-America honors after finished 35th at last year's nationals, and Owens said she thinks Schilling can earn a top-25 finish in next Saturday's meet at Eau Claire, Wis.

Centre scored 82 points to finish comfortably in second, 45 points ahead of third-place Mary Washington and 40 behind champion Emory.

Junior Mark Noll, who led Centre and was fifth overall, finished just 15 seconds off the lead with a time of 26:58 over 8 kilometers. Freshman Nate Blank was ninth, and sophomore Anthony Lippert, a Mercer County High School alumnus, was 19th.

Those three along with John Thompson and Eric Hack and Schilling and Lauren Arnold from the women's team earned all-region honors by finishing in the top 35.

The Centre men will be among 24 teams competing next weekend.

"They've worked hard to get there. We're so pleased they're going to get the opportunity to race," Owens said.

Centre's women were fifth in their team standings. Arnold was 21st.


Centre's men and women lost to Transylvania in a home meet Friday, and on Saturday the women bounced back to win and the men gained a tie at Wilmington.

Transy topped the Centre men 134-93 and won the women's competition 154-88.

"We have very similar swim teams, and the score is not indicative of how well we swam and how close the meet was," Centre coach Dean Brownlee said.

Centre's men lost three races by a combined nine-tenths of a second, which would have been a 30-point swing had they won those races.

Will Adams was first in the 500-yard freestyle and second in the 200 freestyle, while two freshmen produced wins: Patrick Lee in the 50 and 100 butterfly races and Alex Brown in the 100 freestyle. Dustin Schulten also won both diving events.

Lauren Rogers won both the 50 and 100 freestyle for the Centre women, Deming Williams dropped 13 seconds off personal best in the 800 freestyle, Katie Creel won the 100 breaststroke and the 400 freestyle relay team won.

In Saturday's meet at Wilmington, Ohio, Centre's women won 108-94 after winning the 200 freestyle relay, the final event.

Jessica Walther won the 200 individual medley and Tina Maples won the 100 butterfly.

Adams won the 100 and 400 freestyle for the Centre men, who tied Wilmington at 100-all. Stephen Calender won the 200 freestyle, and Nate Cremins won the 100 backstroke.

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