W. harriers take 4th at NCAAs

by Justin Evans | 11/25/97 6:00am

The Dartmouth women's cross country team made history yesterday, cruising to fourth place at the NCAA Championships.

Hosted at Furman University, the Big Green bettered last years fifth place finish with great running by Jenna Rogers '98 and Anne Devlin '99 leading the way. Rogers and Devlin were named to the All-America team for their top-25 finishes: the first time two Dartmouth runners have earned All-America honors in the same meet.

"I'm in a state of disbelief," Dartmouth head coach Ellen O'Neil said in a statement. "I knew they had run as well as last year, but when I looked up at the board and saw fourth, it was both impressive and shocking."

Rogers and Devlin weren't the only Dartmouth standouts, as the Big Green placed five of its seven runners in the top 100.

"To be competitive again this year, we knew we'd need to place four in the top 60 and five in the top 100," O'Neil said in a statement. "Everyone ran exactly as they needed to."

Of the 22 schools at the meet, Dartmouth finished behind only Brigham Young, Stanford and Colorado, all schools which give athletic scholarships.

It was the sixth consecutive appearance for the Big Green at the NCAAs, over which time Dartmouth has consistently improved, going from 22nd back in 1992 to last year's fifth place performance.

Improving from last year's 26th place finish, Rogers posted a 17:17 for the race, good enough for 19th this year. Devlin finished just two seconds behind Rogers, clocking a 17:19 which improved her from 99th place last year to 21st this year.

In her first national collegiate meet, Dartmouth freshman Erin Dromgoole just missed gaining All-American status, finishing in 26th place, three seconds behind Devlin at 17:22.

The Big Green featured another fast freshman, Kelly Keene, who finished 71st overall with a time of 17:42.

"These are outstanding performances by the freshmen," O'Neil said in a statement. "Having Erin narrowly miss All-American is truly awe inspiring."

Rounding out the five Dartmouth runners in the top 100 was Bethany Crenshaw '99 who finished with a time of 18:07, which landed her in 86th place.

"Bethany has always proven to be a critical fifth runner for us, and she came through again today," O'Neil said in a statement.