Nov. 15, 1997
Tollefson, Douma Qualify for NCAA Championships
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - Injury and illness have depleted the Villanova women's cross country squad, but that has not stopped Carrie Tollefson and Carmen Douma, who finished one-two at the NCAA Mid-Atlantic Regional Championships held at Penn State on Nov. 15, 1997. The duo blew away the rest of the field and will run as individuals at the NCAA Championships, held on Monday, Nov. 24, 1997, at Furman University.
Tollefson, a junior from Dawson, Minn., set the course record at Penn State earlier this season, and won the Regional in 18:02.60 amid wintry conditions. Douma, a sophomore from Cambridge, Ontario, was not far behind, covering the course in 18:16.69. Kate Landau from Georgetown was third in 18:36.07. The only other Wildcat competitor was Jackie Gruters (Jr., Sarasota, Fla.), who finished 86th overall in 20:55.67.
This marks only the third time since 1982 that Villanova has not fielded a women's NCAA cross country team, as the Wildcats did not compete at nationals in 1982, 1987, and 1988. In 1988, then-head coach Marty Stern redshirted the entire team, as Vickie Huber was competing at the Olympic Games for the United States. The Wildcats went on to win six-straight NCAA titles from 1989-1994, and placed third in 1995 and second a year ago.
Head coach John Marshall's current squad has been hit hard this season by both illness and injury. Prior to the season, Marshall lost freshman Ann McGranahan to illness, followed by All-American Kristine Jost for the same reason after only two meets. In addition, freshman Geraldine McCarthy suffered a stress fracture, while sophomore Tamieka Grizzle has a sprained ankle and was unable to compete. McGranahan, Jost, and McCarthy are all expected to redshirt the season and return to competition for the indoor track season.
The Wildcat men were also in action at the Regional Championships, putting in a fine performance and placing seventh overall in the team competition with 163 points. Princeton (85) and Navy (94) won the meet and advanced to the NCAA Championships next week.
Villanova was led by Dean Smith (So., Baltimore, Md.), who capped off a fine sophomore campaign with a seventh-place finish in 33:00.87. Scott Tantino (So., North Wales, Pa.) and Coulby Dunn (Jr., Greentown, Pa.) were also exceptional, placing 10th and 12th respectively. Tantino covered the course in 33:06.32, while Dunn clocked in at 33:19.60. Brock Butler (Jr., West Chester, Pa.) and Joseph McNamara (Jr., Granville, N.Y.) rounded out the Wildcat scoring with 55th and 85th-place finishes, respectively.
NCAA Mid-Atlantic Regional Championships
Men's Team Results