Kayali Elected 2012 Cross Country Captain

Nihal Kayali.
Nihal Kayali.

Marvin Receives Cross Country Award

NEW HAVEN, Conn. – At the annual Yale cross country banquet, held on Dec. 1, two Bulldogs were recognized for their contributions to the team this past season. Junior Nihal Kayali was elected captain of the 2012 squad, and junior Elizabeth Marvin was honored with the Mike Stanley-John Cleary Class of 1954 Women's Cross Country Award, given annually to "the outstanding member of the Yale women's cross country team who excels in Dedication, Commitment, and Inspiration to the sport of cross country."

Kayali had a break-out season in cross country this year, progressing through the ranks of the Bulldogs to become the team's third scorer at the Ivy League Heptagonal Championships, where Yale was fourth, and the NCAA Regional meet, where the team took sixth. These finishes were the team's best since 2006 and 2005, respectively. Since the Bulldogs will not graduate any of their scorers from this season, captain Kayali will look to lead the team to even greater successes during the 2012 campaign.

She cited the cross country team as one of the best parts of her Yale experience: "I'm deeply honored to have been elected captain by my teammates, for whom I have such respect and admiration. It's incredibly validating that these feelings are apparently mutual! Being a member of the Yale cross country team has fundamentally shaped my Yale experience and I can't wait to help lead the team next fall," she said.

Kayali also predicts that the team will build on its stand-out season:  "I am eager to see what this team can accomplish after a notable breakthrough this year following three years of relative stagnation. We've laid the groundwork to propel this team onto the national scene next year, and I hope that we can continue to improve and help restore a tradition of excellence that the Yale women's cross country program had historically maintained."

Marvin capped off her season with the annual cross country award, which she also won last year. Marvin earned All-Ivy and All-Northeast honors for her performances at the two championship meets this year, including her 17th-place finish at the NCAA Regional meet, where 243 runners competed. Continuously the team's second finisher overall, Marvin had a strong junior campaign this year.

Report by Natalie Villa '13, Yale Sports Publicity