October 2, 2009

Crimson Edges Bulldogs at Dual Meet

Young Runners Step Up

Results

BOSTON – The Bulldogs narrowly lost to the Crimson at the annual Harvard-Yale meet on Oct. 2, the final score totaling 26 to 29. Even with their loss, however, the Bulldogs have proved that they can compete with higher-ranked teams in the Northeast region.

Harvard's top runner, Dan Chenoweth, led the 8K race at Franklin Park from the start, finishing in 24:20. The next pack alternated between the Bulldogs and the Crimson as the runners fought for positions along the course. Sophomore Conor Dooney placed second with a time of 24:44, followed by junior Jeff Perrella in fourth (24:47), freshman Demetri Goutos in sixth (25:02) and junior Max Walden in seventh (25:10). Sophomore Julian Sheinbaum finished several spots behind in 10th place (25:31). 

Head coach Dan Ireland said that the majority of the race was very close.

"We positioned ourselves better in the second half of the race," Ireland said. "But we just got pushed back."

Dooney ran steadily behind Chenoweth, a 2008 All-Region runner, set a blazing pace for the rest of the field. 

"We ended up going to the two-mile really fast," Dooney said. "We were definitely optimistic that we could beat them today. Realistically, we should have won."

Dooney is also emerging as the regular front runner for the Bulldogs, despite the fact that he is only in his second season and sat out for most of his first season. He also scored first at the Iona Meet of Champions in New York City two weeks ago. 

The other young runners are playing a key role for the Bulldogs as well, especially first-year member Goutos, who finished third on the team at the dual meet. Goutos loo ks ready to be a huge contributor for the rest of the season.

Overall, senior captain Chris Labosky said that the Bulldogs performed well.

"I think all the guys, with very few exceptions, ran tough as nails," Labosky said.

The close score should also signify the Bulldogs' potential against other higher-ranked teams. The Crimson is ranked five places above the Bulldogs by the U.S. Track and Field and Cross Country Association for the Northeast region.

The disappointment of a rivalry loss is seldom easy, but the Bulldogs are already looking toward the future.

"I hope we use it (the loss) as the fire to go into the next race," Dooney said.

The Bulldogs' next meet is the Penn State Invitational on Oct. 16 in State College, Pa. 

Report by Miriam Cho '13, Yale Sports Publicity