HOPKINTON, N.H. – The Felician University men's cross-country team completed its 2015 season by competing in the NCAA Division II East Regional championship, hosted by Franklin Pierce University at Hopkinton State Fairgrounds, on Sunday afternoon. The Golden Falcons placed 22nd out of the 28 complete squads in attendance.
The Regional Championship is contested on a 10,000-meter course, 2K longer than most regular-season races. Felician junior Mike Secreti (Paramus, N.J./Paramus) was the Golden Falcons' frontrunner, with his best career regional performance by both time and placement. Two weeks after earning all-Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference (CACC) honors, Secreti finished 35th out of 189 entrants with a time of 32 minutes, 50 seconds.
Secreti was nearly three minutes head of teammate Andre Francisco (Lyndhurst, N.J./Lyndhurst), the Golden Falcons' next finisher. Francisco ran a 35:48 and finished 111th. Senior Aiden Lynch (Marlton, N.J./Cherokee), competing in his final collegiate race, produced the fastest 10K of his career, a 36:48. He placed 141st.
Felician totaled 611 points, 36 more than 21st-place New York Institute of Technology. The Golden Falcons were two points better than St. Thomas Aquinas College in 23rd, and defeated three CACC rivals.
American International College put runners in first, second, and fourth place, and easily won the team championship with 48 points. Bentley University (103 points) and Stonehill College (122) earned the region's other two automatic qualifiers into the NCAA Division II National Championship, with Stonehill edging host Franklin Pierce (126) for the final spot.
AIC's John Chirchir was the individual winner with a time of 30:48, nine seconds ahead of teammate Leakey Kipkosgei. The East's three individual berths into nationals went to Dieter Gutbrod of Southern Connecticut State Univeristy (third place), Nacho Hernando of Southern New Hampshire University (fifth), and Colton Ham of Franklin Pierce (sixth).