Individual Champion Matt Keally Leads Sweep of Top FourNEW MARKET, VA - With junior Matt Keally (Virginia Beach, VA) winning the individual crown, leading a Tribe sweep of the top four, William and Mary men's cross country won its fifth-straight CAA Championship this morning. The College scored 18 points (one shy of the Tribe's own record) on the strength of a sweep of the top-four positions (with its fifth scorer finishing a strong eighth) to easily down runner-up James Madison (45) and third place Virginia Commonwealth (87). W&M had eight all-conference honorees (awarded to the top-12 finishers) and had no classified harrier finish below 17th in a display of the team's great depth, especially given the squad held out three of its top performers. The title is 12th overall for the Green and Gold, and its five in a row from 2000-04 ties its longest run holding the championship, as W&M also won five consecutive crowns from 1993-1997.
Keally, a CAA champion in track, won his first conference title in cross country by clocking a 25:15.6 on the 8,000 New Market Battlefield course, the fourth-straight CAA individual crown won by a Tribe harrier. Following behind for runner-up honors was freshman Christo Landry (Falls Church, VA), who ran a 25:20.9 while senior Jeff Hedley (Virginia Beach, VA) claimed third in 25:37.5. Senior Pat Comstock (Portsmouth, VA) completed the Tribe sweep by racing to fourth, his best CAA finish, by crossing the line in 25:39.4. Junior Sean Anastasia-Murphy (Gloucester, MA) rounded out the College's scoring five in eighth place, finishing in 26:04.3. Redshirt freshman Anthony Arena (Manassas, VA) made a big stride in his career by finishing 10th for his first All-CAA honors in cross country, racing with decorated veterans Charlie Hurt (Charlottesville, VA) in 11th and Adam Otstot (Richmond, VA) in 12th as the trio completed those from the College who received All-CAA accolades.
Sophomore David Murphy (Warwick, RI), last year's CAA Rookie of the Year, just missed his second career all-conference honors by claiming 13th. Redshirt freshman Steve Hoogland (Springfield, VA) placed 16th and freshman Dave Mock (Johnstown, PA) finished 17th in a solid display of the squad's depth.
Reigning CAA Coach of the Year Alex Gibby beamed about his team's effort. "It was an impressive team performance; it's the best I've seen this group run year," Gibby said. It sets us up well for the NCAA Regional as far as our options of who to run, but overall, it was just a great example of our depth. Keally and Landry both did fantastic jobs, running intelligent races and going for the knock-out when they needed to."
W&M next competes at Virginia's Cavalier Open on November 6 before gearing up for the NCAA Southeast Regional on November 13.
Top 5 Teams 1. William and Mary 18 2. James Madison 45 3. Virginia Commonwealth 87 4. Delaware 107 5. UNC Wilmington 144 Top 5 Individuals: Place Individual Team Time 1 Matt Keally W&M 25:15.6 2 Christo Landry W&M 25:20.9 3 Jeff Hedley W&M 25:37.5 4 Pat Comstock W&M 25:39.4 5 Ted Herbert JMU 25:42.4 Other W&M Individuals in Top-12 (All-CAA honors) 8 Sean Anastasia-Murphy W&M 26:04.3 10 Anthony Arena W&M 26:10.4 11 Charlie Hurt W&M 26:11.2 12 Adam Otstot W&M 26:22.4 Other W&M Individuals 13 David Murphy W&M 26:29.0 16 Steve Hoogland W&M 26:35.6 17 Dave Mock W&M 26:40.0