White Wins First-Ever Southeast Regional Championship
LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Junior Catherine White won the individual title at the 2009 NCAA Southeast Regional Championships on Saturday to become the first-ever Cavalier to earn a regional title. White led the No. 19 women’s squad to a runner-up finish behind No. 15 Duke to claim an automatic berth into the NCAA Championships. Virginia’s No. 19 men’s squad finished fifth and will await word on an at-large selection to nationals, which will be announced tomorrow at 7 p.m.
White completed the course in 20:03.90 to earn individual honors. She was trailed by sophomore Morgane Gay, junior Stephanie Garcia and senior Lauretta Dezubay, respectively, who each earned all-region honors. Gay crossed within a steady slew of competitors, completed the course in 20:39.44 for eighth place. Garcia took 18th in 21:05.32, while Dezubay was 25th with a time of 21:25.51. Sophomore Laurel MacMillan rounded out the scoring Cavaliers with a 62nd-place finish in 22:08.66.
On the men’s side, running their first 10k of the season, junior All-American Emil Heineking led the Cavaliers with a seventh-place finish in 30:16.55, while sophomore Ryan Collins finished 14th with a time of 30:38.75 and junior Graham Tribble took 21st in 30:55.59 to each earn all-region honors. Junior Trey Miller finished in 31:42.98 for 44th and freshman Sintayehu Taye finished 47th in 31:50.04.
Liberty’s Samuel Chelanga won the individual title in 29:31.25.
No. 15 Duke claimed the women’s team championship with 69 points, while the Cavaliers earned the second automatic bid to NCAAs with 113 points. NC State finished third with 135 points.
No. 8 William & Mary won the men’s race with 49 points. No. 16 NC State finished runner-up with 99 points and No. 24 Louisville rounded out the top-three with 121 points. No. 30 Duke finished fourth with a score of 131, barely edging the Cavaliers, who took fifth with 133 points.
The men’s team will need to wait until tomorrow to find out their fate for the NCAA Championships. Thirteen at-large teams will be selected by the NCAA committee to participate in the national championships and the top-four individuals not on a qualifying team will automatically advance to the finals, as well. Two additional at-large individuals will be selected by the committee to round out the field of competition. All individual qualifiers must have finished in the top-25 of their region to be eligible for selection.
The 2009 NCAA Championships will be held Monday, Nov. 23 at the Wabash Valley Family Sports Center in Terre Haute, Ind.