Men’s Cross Country Earns Sixth-Straight USTFCCCA All-Academic Team Award

Four Skyhawks collect individual All-Academic accolades

2017 NCAA DII Cross Country All-Academic Awards

2017 NCAA DII Cross Country Individual All-Academic Awards





EASTON, Mass. (February 13, 2018) – The Stonehill College men's cross country team has earned All-Academic honors for the 2017 season from the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA), while four Skyhawks collected individual All-Academic accolades.

Juniors Alexander Demeule (Merrimac, Mass./Pentucket Regional), Riley Dowd (Peabody, Mass./Peabody Veterans Memorial), Christopher Drace (Franklin, New Jersey/Pope John XXIII), and senior Kenny Vinacco (Scituate, Rhode Island/Scituate) were recognized for posting a cumulative grade point average of 3.25 or higher while also finishing among the top-30 percent of total eligible runners at the regional championship or in the top half of the field at the NCAA Championships.

Stonehill was among 119 men's NCAA Division II teams to earn All-Academic honors from the USTFCCCA. To qualify for this award, programs must have compiled a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher and scored at their NCAA regional meet. The Skyhawks took home the program's first New England Championship and ninth NE10 Championship in program history, before grabbing their first NCAA East Regional Championship since 2013 and capping the 2017 season with their 15th-consecutive appearance at the NCAA DII Championships, where the team placed 16th for its best finish since 2006. Academically, Stonehill registered a 3.23 cumulative GPA through the fall semester.

Demeule received his second USTFCCCA All-Academic accolade as he posted four top-15 finishes in the five races he competed in this season. He kicked off the season with an eighth-place mark at the Division II/III Challenge, following that up with a 13th-place finish at the Codfish Bowl. At the New England Championship and the NE10 Championship he finished with personal bests of 38th and fifth place for his first NE10 All-Conference first team honor. At the East Regional Championship, Demeule recorded another personal best with a fourth-place finish to earn his second spot on the NCAA DII All-East Region team. Demeule then competed in his second NCAA Division II National Championship.

Dowd also picked up his second USTFCCCA All-Academic honor after recording four top-20 marks during this history season. Dowd saw his first individual title at the Division II/III Challenge this year, assisting the Skyhawks to their second team title. He crossed the finish line seventh at the Codfish Bowl and then placed ninth at the New England Championship for his first All-New England honor. At the NE10 Championships, he finished 29th at the eight-kilometer race and then impressed the field with a 10th-place mark at the East Regional Championship claiming his second All-East Region honor. To complete the season, he ran in his third NCAA Championship appearance where he crossed the finish line with a personal best 89th-place mark.

Drace earns his first academic award after appearing in his first NCAA Championship and posting three top-15 marks this season. At the Shacklette Invitational, he finished 10th out of the field and then placed 14th at the eight-kilometer Division II/III Challenge. Drace was the second Skyhawk to cross the finish line at the New England Championship sub-varsity race, finishing eighth. He posted a 25th- and 26th-place mark at the NE10 Championship and NCAA East Regional Championship to put him on the line for the NCAA Championship.

Senior Vinacco also competed in his first NCAA Championship in the Purple and White, after totaling three top-15 marks. The senior finished seventh in his first meet of the year at the Division II/III Challenge and then placed 24th at the New England Championships. In his second appearance at the NE10 Championship, Vinacco earned his first All-NE10 honor with a 12th-place finish, while he made his first appearance at the East Regional for his first All-East Region accolade with a 13th-place mark.

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