The Boston University men’s cross country team captured its first conference championship since 2000 when it took first place in the America East championship Saturday afternoon at Franklin Park. Graduate student Eric Ashe led the way for the Terriers with a second-place time of 24:22.29 on the eight-kilometer course, finishing nearly 18 seconds behind University of Maine junior Riley Masters.
BU was the only one of the nine America East teams to have three runners finish among the first eight competitors. Freshman Rich Peters (seventh, 24:50.11) and junior Robert Gibson (eighth, 24:56.83) rounded out the Terriers’ top trio. All three runners were given All-Conference honors for crossing the line among the top 10 finishers. Junior Matthew Paulson (11th, 24:58.34) missed All-Conference by just three-tenths of a second.
Overall, the hometown Terriers beat out Binghamton University 45-54, but it wasn’t until junior Joe Greenspun, BU’s seventh finisher and last runner to score, came in 22nd place, 10 spots ahead of Binghamton’s seventh man, that BU clinched the conference crown. The championship victory was the Terriers’ 11th but their first in a decade. BU placed sixth out of nine just a season ago.
As for the women, junior Katie Matthews was the only Terrier to earn a spot on the All-Conference squad as she finished eighth on the five-kilometer track in a time of 17:50.68. The team as a whole finished fourth with 104 points. Stony Brook University dominated the women’s competition with its top four runners finishing in the race’s top five en route to a race-low 24 points.