XC runner Phillips first in ten years to go to Championships

Jacob Phillips from an earlier race. (Hannah Rose for The Phoenix)

Cross country’s Jacob Phillips ‘13 finished a tremendous junior season with a strong performance at the Division III NCAA National Championships. The event, hosted by the University of Wisconsin in Winneconne, took place on Saturday, November 19.

“It was something I was working toward all year,” Phillips said of the accomplishment. “I was excited and had a really good race at [the NCAA Regional Championships], so I knew it would happen then.”
Phillips finished with a time of 25:23.68, which was good enough to place 114th out of 279 individual runners in the 8K race.

Other schools that featured qualifiers included Wesleyan, St. Lawrence, Johns Hopkins, Dickinson and Haverford.

Although the Garnet as a team did not qualify for the Championships, Phillips felt their support regardless.

“I think generally the team was excited to have someone go,” Phillips said. “We were hoping we might have had a shot to go as a team, which we think we will next year.”

Phillips’s seventh-place finish at the NCAA Mideast Regional Meet on November 12 was enough for him to qualify for the National Championships, an accomplishment not seen at Swarthmore since Marc Jeuland ‘01 qualified ten years ago. Jeuland now works as an Assistant Professor of Public Policy and Global Health at Duke University.

Ben Sathre, a senior from St. Thomas in Minnesota, won the individual race with a time of 23:44.27. Coming in second was senior Lee Berube of SUNY Genesco (23:49.60) and John Johnston, a senior from St. Lawrence, rounded out the top three with a finish of 24:06.78.

“[It’s] a great accomplishment, and well-deserved,” Head Coach Peter Carroll said of Phillips’s selection. “The great thing about [cross-country] is that what you put into it is the reward that you get out of it. I know how hard Jacob worked, and for him to do this as a junior is really great to see.”

In addition to his National Championship qualifications, Phillips has enjoyed a 2011 season replete with highlights. Among them are his first-place finish at the Dickinson Invitational, 10th-place finish at the Centennial Conference Championships, being named the Centennial Conference Runner of the Week and multiple finishes at the top of the Garnet leaderboard all year. His participation in the championships is only the latest in a long line of accomplishments that have confirmed his position as a leader of the cross country team.

“The goal for next year,” Carroll said, “is for the rest of the team to join Jacob [at the NCAA Championships], with him leading the way.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

The Phoenix

Discover more from The Phoenix

Subscribe now to keep reading and get access to the full archive.

Continue reading