BRUNSWICK, Maine – The team training plan, in recent weeks, featured a highlighted box with goals for the remaining meets. Some targets focused on time, while other intentions aimed for specific outcomes.
There were two objectives remaining as Salve Regina traveled to Bowdoin College for the NCAA Division III New England Regional Championship on Saturday: An improved performance in the meet as compared to a year ago, and a successful matchup against the Wildcats of Johnson & Wales, who stifled the Seahawks in two meetings earlier this fall.
The Seahawks placed exactly as they did last year, but with a faster aggregate time. And the third time proved to be the charm against Johnson & Wales. Salve Regina finished six places and more than 100 points clear of the Wildcats.
Aidan Lynch (Little Silver, N.J.) again led the way for Salve Regina. The junior captain split the first mile in 5:35 as he navigated the frozen footing on the grass and trails at Bowdoin. Senior Brett Jutras (East Bridgewater, Mass.) ran in the second spot, matching Lynch stride for stride for the first three miles. Lynch finished at 29:03.5, while Jutras crossed the line at 29:27.8.
Seniors Chandler Da Cruz (Middletown, R.I.), Riley Rancourt (Warren, R.I.) and Tanner Owens (Long Beach, N.Y.) completed the scoring for Salve Regina. Da Cruz finished at 29:37.2 for the second-fastest 8,000-meter time of his career. Freshman Jay Burstein (Bronxville, N.Y.), in the No. 6 spot, posted a personal best – 30:50.6 – at the championship distance.
Williams junior Aidan Ryan raced to the individual championship, crossing the finish line at 24:51.6 and keying a dominant performance for the Ephs. Williams finished 1-2-6-7-8 for a team score of 24. Colby finished second with 93 points. Williams and Colby earned the two automatic bids for the NCAA Division III National Championship in Louisville, Kentucky.
The Salve Regina performances included:
251. Aidan Lynch – 29:03.5
268. Brett Jutras – 29:27.8
277. Chandler Da Cruz – 29:37.2
286. Riley Rancourt – 29:43.7
300. Tanner Owens – 30:09.2
326. Jay Burstein – 30:50.6
350. Brendan Clancey – 32:13.6
The regional meet marks the end of the fall racing season for Salve Regina.