UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. – Senior Kate Scott earned an automatic bid into the NCAA National Championship, while leading the Bucknell women’s cross country team to a sixth-place finish among 28 teams at the Mid-Atlantic Regionals at Penn State’s Blue/White Golf Courses on Friday afternoon.
Scott became the fifth Bucknell runner and the first since Leanna Nastase in 2006 to qualify for the NCAA National Championship as an individual. The senior finished ninth in the 6k race, completing the course in 20:45. Penn State’s Tessa Barrett won the individual race with a time of 20:00, as the Nittany Lions claimed three of the top four spots in the standings.
Sarah Chandler earned All-Region honors for the second straight season. She improved upon her 24th-place showing last year, finishing 19th with a time of 21:08. Colleen Buckley, a First Team All-Patriot League honoree, took 33rd, while Elizabeth Sheprow, a Second Team All-Patriot League selection, finished 42nd, giving the Bison four runners in the top 50 in a field of 198 participants.
No. 9 Penn State won the team title, followed by No. 21 Villanova, No. 24 Penn, No. 27 West Virginia and Georgetown. Penn State and Villanova received the region’s two automatic bids to the NCAA Championships.
Bucknell, the Patriot League champions, was the league’s top finisher, while finishing ahead of Pittsburgh, Princeton, Maryland and Duquesne to round out the top 10.
“Our women simply gave it everything they had,” said head coach Kevin Donner, the Patriot League Coach of the Year. “Kate is an automatic qualifier as an individual and Sarah ran really well to earn her second all-region honor. Chrissy struggled with some sickness, but we had some others make up some big ground over the last 2k to finish a very solid sixth. I am very proud of this team.”
The NCAA National Championships are set for Nov. 19 at Wabash Valley Family Sports Center in Terre Haute, Indiana.