JOPLIN, Mo. – Carl Dunne's record-breaking freshman season came to an end Saturday morning from Joplin, Missouri as he placed 156th in the 2012 NCAA Division II National Championship race. His finishing time of 32:06.2 broke the Saint Leo University all-time fastest 10K record, which Dunne himself previously held.
The 245-person race featured top runners from all over the country, including many high-level competitors from the Sunshine State Conference. Dunne, a native from Monasterboice, Ireland, finished fourth among SSC runners, just behind Florida Tech's Moses Kirui (76th), Nova Southeastern's Kevin Meagher (150th), and Florida Tech's Chris Cacciapaglia (151st).
"Carl had a great race and represented Saint Leo very well. The race went out much faster than he is accustomed to, but he responded well," said assistant coach Kent Reiber. "He was focused and determined to run well, and that's what he did. Coach Miller-Mangen and myself are proud of his performance and Carl is already looking forward to making the trip back next year."
Overall, it was Micah Chelimo of Alaska Anchorage who took home the first-place victory as he finished the 10K race in 28:56.6 and ended his senior season. Adams State (CO) claimed the National Championship team title as they sprinted to the finish line and collected 34 points, which was almost 70 points faster than the second-place team, Colorado Mines.
Dunne's freshman season came to an end with numerous accolades, including being named the Sunshine State Conference Freshman of the Year as well as USTFCCCA All-South Region.
After participating in just eight races during his freshman season, Dunne notched his name five times on the Saint Leo all-time fastest 8K record book, as well as twice on the 10K record book, claiming the top position in both.
This post-race recap was brought to you by Papa Joe's Italian Restaurant. Visit Papa Joe's for all of your dine-in or catering needs.