---- — TERRE HAUTE, Ind. — Former Masconomet standout Abbey D’Agostino, a Dartmouth senior, finally won the one title that has eluded her during her collegiate career, winning the 2013 NCAA Cross Country National Championship on the LaVern Gibson 6K course yesterday in 20:00.3.
The win gives D’Agostino five national championships in her career between cross country, indoor and outdoor seasons, the most individual titles ever by an Ivy League student-athlete in any sport dating back to 1883.
Since the start of this calendar year, D’Agostino has won four championships (indoor – 1500m/3000m, outdoor 5000m, cross country), two more than any other Ivy League track athlete has ever won in a career.
The now 10-time All-American had finished as the runner-up in 2012 and the third-place individual in 2011 by a combined 2.4 seconds. But those two results are now in the past as the Topsfield native has delivered the Ivy League its first-ever cross country champion on either the men’s or the women’s side.
Iona’s Kate Avery opened up a big lead early in the race, leaving the pack almost 20 meters behind. But D’Agostino hung back, ran with the crowd and waited. Whether it was Avery slowing or the Dartmouth senior picking things up, in nearly the blink of an eye, D’Agostino had taken over the top spot and built up an insurmountable lead for the final 2,000 meters. She wraps up the 2013 season having won all six races in which she lined up in.
All of these dramatics happened on a rain-soaked course that was littered with puddles and large areas of mud that forced the NCAA to move up the starting line roughly 110 meters early Saturday morning.
Providence, the squad the Green and White had been chasing in the Northeast Regional all fall took home the team title for the first time since 1995. Dartmouth claimed 16th overall with 369 points, the best finish by any of the three Ivy League teams competing on yesterday.
“It was an incredible feeling when I crossed that line,” D’Agostino said. “I woke up this morning with a good feeling and a great deal of trust in myself. Having the team here was a huge difference and the final piece of the puzzle for me this year being able to win.”
A year removed from a second-place finish, the Friars took the title, its first since 1995. Senior Emily Sisson was the Friars’ top finisher with a seventh place finish with a time of 20:17.5.