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Bobcats of the week of Nov 12, 2007

Matt Dunlap '08
The triumphs were both group- and self-oriented for the Bates men's cross country team at last weekend's New England Division III Regional Championships, held at Connecticut College's 8-kilometer course at Harkness State Park.As a team, Bates picked the perfect time to peak, surprising a few rivals by placing 10th out of 43 scoring teams after going the entire season outside of the regional top 10 rankings.

The Bobcats' performance, of course, came thanks to a number of outstanding individual performances, highlighted by senior captainMatt Dunlap (Farmington, Maine). Dunlap finished 15th (in 25:13.1) at the meet, 10 places better than his spot a year ago and earning his second straight All-New England honors. The following day he learned he had earned an at-large bid to run at this Saturday's NCAA Championships at St. Olaf College, fulfilling a goal he had set for himself a year ago.

"It couldn't have turned out any better for Matt," said Bates coach Al Fereshetian.  "He ran the toughest race of his life and he qualified. He will run the same way in Minnesota, and as he always likes to be, he will be around the front of the pack there too!"

Esther Kendall '10
Although they were so tightly packed that they almost seemed determined to finish all at once, someone had to take the lead for the Bates women's cross country team at the Division III New England Championships last Saturday. That somebody was sophomore Esther Kendall(Ridgeway, Ontario).Kendall notched a personal record at Connecticut College's 6-kilometer course at Harkness State Park, crossing the finish line in 23:00.1, good for 47th place out of 334 runners at the meet.

The Bobcats entered the meet ranked 10th in New England but were able to edge Keene State, 296 points to 301, for ninth place, despite the Owls boasting the individual race champion. Wesleyan edged Bates by the slimmest of margins, a single point, for eighth place.

As has been the team's theme all season, Bates' success was based on depth, with the Bobcats' top five finishers (and point-scorers) packed from 47th to 76th place. Kendall was followed closely behind by first-year Jennifer Mitton (Reisterstown, Md.) in 51st at 23:04.1, sophomore Abby Samuelson (Freeport, Maine) in 58th at 23:08.7, senior Aviva Goldstein (Manchester, N.H.) in 65th at 23:15.8 and sophomoreMorgan Maciewicz (Marblehead, Mass.) in 76th at 23:27.6. Goldstein's and Maciewicz's times were better than the fourth- and fifth-place runners from all but the top five teams in the race.