PHILADELPHIA – The University of Pennsylvania women’s cross country team has been selected for an at-large berth to the NCAA Women’s Cross Country Championship set for Saturday, Nov. 19 in Terre Haute, Ind. Additionally, men's cross country senior Nick Tuck will compete as an individual to represent the Quaker men.
The selection marks a historic day following a terrific season for the Quaker women as the Red and Blue earned their first team invitation to the NCAA Championships in program history. The women have had eight individuals qualify for the season-ending meet dating back to its start in 1981 but it marks the first time Penn will compete as a full team at the championship. Current seniors Ashley Montgomery (2015) and Cleo Whiting (2013) are two of those eight individuals as each participated at the event as solo qualifiers.
The announcement was made on Saturday as the official field was released by the NCAA. A total of 31 teams are set to compete at the championships; 18 were auto-qualifiers by finishing in the top-two of the team standings in nine regional meets held across the country while 13 teams were chosen as at-large selections.
Tuck earns his selection to the NCAA Championship as an individual qualifier by virtue of his sixth place finish at the Regional on Friday. He was one of the top finishers not on a team to advance to NCAAs.
Penn finished third in the Mid-Atlantic Regional held Friday at Penn State University. The Quakers were chosen as an at-large selection due to their performances against other qualified teams across the course of the season.
The NCAA Championship is set to take place next Saturday, Nov. 13 in Terre Haute, Ind. at the LaVern Gibson Championship Cross Country Course. In the latest USTFCCCA rankings, the Quakers were No. 3 in the region and No. 24 nationally.