HAVERFORD, Pa. – After returning to the national podium in 2018, the Haverford College Men's Cross Country team looks poised for another successful season, as the squad has been tabbed for its sixth straight Centennial Conference title in the preseason coaches' poll, the conference office announced on Wednesday.
Haverford received 62 total voting points to top the annual rankings, including six of eight possible first place votes. As always, coaches were not allowed to vote for their own teams.
Johns Hopkins was selected second, with three first place votes and 50 total voting points. Dickinson was tabbed third with 50 voting points, while Swarthmore (43 points) and Muhlenberg (33 points) round out the top five predicted finishers at the conference meet. Gettysburg (29 points) and Ursinus (24 points) were predicted sixth and seventh, respectively, while Franklin & Marshall and McDaniel tied for eighth (12 total voting points).
In 2018, Haverford again captured the Centennial Conference Championship, defending its home course despite rainy and wet conditions. The Fords edged a challenge from Johns Hopkins to take their fifth straight conference title. Haverford won its 23rd overall Centennial crown, to extend a run of dominance that has lasted more than two decades under head coach Tom Donnelly. Donnelly named the 2018 Centennial Conference Coach of the Year.
On the national stage, The Haverford men have qualified as a team to the NCAA Championships during each of the last 26 years, including a fourth-place finish in last season's meet in Winneconne, Wis. They have placed in the top 10 a total of 19 times across their 36 all-time appearances, including 11 times in the past 15 years.
The team gets the 2019 season underway at the Alumni Open (Sept. 7) before hosting the Main Line Invitational on September 20. This season's Centennial Conference Championships will be held at Gettysburg on Saturday, November 2.
The Fords will have a new look as its three All-America finishers leave to graduation. Senior Sam McCalpin headlines the returners, as a two-time nationals participants who will look to make his third trip to nationals as the meet is held in his hometown of Louisville, Ky (Nov. 23).
Senior David Watt also returns from a nationals performance, while talented sophomores Jamie Moreland and Peter Buckley also made appearances at the national meet in their first season. Moreland will enter his sophomore campaign as the reigning Centennial Conference Rookie of the Year after crossing in 22nd overall at the conference meet.