WESTFIELD, Mass. ---- Kerry O'Neil (Stoughton) placed 36th and James Sepulveda (Brockton) finished 62nd at the NJCAA Division III Cross Country National Championship hosted by Holyoke CC at Stanley Park on Saturday.
It marked Massasoit's first appearance at the NJCAA Nationals in cross country under first year head coach Matt Jordan.
"Both Kerry and James were happy with how they performed," Jordan said. "James dropped nearly a minute from the last time we raced here and Kerry posted the fastest time for female runners in our region. I hope that sending runners to Nationals will help expand our roster for next year. We hope that this success will carry over to our track and field program this spring."
O'Neil took home the fastest time in Region 21 on the women's side, clocking a time of 21:23.7. She improved six seconds on her time when Massasoit raced the James Earley Invitational at Stanley Park back on Oct. 10. Overall, it was O'Neil's second fastest time of the season and nearly a minute faster than her time at the regional meet held at CCRI.
A total of 130 female runners took part in the race, with Suffolk County CC claiming the team championship and Meseret Hart of Northampton CC clocked the fastest time (18:43.3).
Sepulveda shed over 50 seconds off his personal best time this season, finishing in 30:54. His 62nd place ranked fifth amongst Region 21 runners. Sepulveda ran a time of 31:45 at Stanley Park earlier in the season.
For the men, there were 153 total runners with Harper College taking home the national title. Individually, Zakaria Djouma of Mohawk Valley CC, finished first in 26:15.1.