Oxy Men's Cross Country Headed to Nationals

Oxy Men's Cross Country Headed to Nationals

LOS ANGELES — The Occidental men's cross country team earned an at-large bid to the NCAA Division III National Championship meet next weekend.

NCAA Selection Announcement

Full NCAA Championship Information

The Tigers, which finished second place in the highly-competitive SCIAC, fourth in the West Region and have been nationally ranked all season, learned of the news on Sunday's selection show. 

It's a second lease on the season for Oxy which felt like a long shot to earn a bid after slightly underperforming at the West Regional at Pomona-Pitzer on Saturday.

"The men had a poor day yesterday at Regionals by their own high standards and are relieved to have been selected by the NCAA committee to compete at Nationals next week," Oxy head coach Rob Bartlett said. "We're looking forward to a chance to show the country that we deserve to be there next Saturday."

Oxy's national reputation jumped up a full notch this year when the Tigers finished 13th at a meet that is considered the Pre-Nationals at Principia College earlier this season.

Keenan Leary leads the group as Oxy's No. 1. He finished sixth in the region, fourth in the SCIAC and was named the 2017 Ray Adkinson Award winner, an annual accolade to a senior athlete who best exemplifies the conference's high ideals during his or her association with SCIAC cross country. 

Oxy women's 2016 national qualifier Roxanne Valle did not make the group of individual at-large bids. She needed Linfield to qualify as a team, but the NCAA took just two women's team's from the West. 

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