OWINGS MILLS, Md. - Stevenson University men's cross country senior Patrick Watson and women's cross country junior Emily Gates will compete at the NCAA Division III Cross Country Championships being held at E.P. "Tom" Sawyer State Park in Louisville, Kentucky on Saturday, November 23. The 8K men's championship race is slated for a 10:45 am starting gun, with the women's 6K event to begin at 11:45 am.
Watson is making his third straight trip to nationals. Last season, he became the first Mustang cross country All-American after finishing 15th, and comes into Saturday's event as one of the favorites after winning both the NCAA Mideast Regional and the Middle Atlantic Conference individual titles. In last week's regional held at Lehigh University, Watson traversed the eight-kilometer course in 24:24.4, besting second place by over 16 seconds.
Gates is making her first trip to the NCAA Championship and is the first Mustang women's cross country competitor to qualify for nationals. She finished third at the NCAA Mideast Regional to be the region's top individual qualifier, coming in with a 6K time of 21:32.7, finishing less than two seconds behind second place. Gates also finished second at the MAC cross country championship, the highest-ever finish for a Stevenson women's runner at the cross country championship.
A total of 32 teams will compete in each event, along with 56 individuals (top-7 from each region) that were not part of an advancing team. The top 40 individuals in each event will be honored as USTFCCCA All-Americans.