Thursday, November 14, 2002
Written by Ayako Sawanobori


 MEDFORD Sophomore Nate Brigham (Penacook, NH/Merrimack Valley) set the pace for the Tufts University Men's Cross Country team at the 2002 New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) championship race, hosted by Tufts at the Farm Course in Grafton, Mass., on November 2. His 12th place overall finish out of 115 runners earned Brigham All-NESCAC honors as one of the top 14 runners in the conference. Named to the Second Team, he completed the 8K course in 26:14.81, which was his fastest time on the course this year.

That led Tufts to a fifth-place finish, one point out of fourth and seven points out of third. This is the second All-NESCAC honor in as many seasons for Brigham. He earned Second Team honors last fall after finishing 11th in the NESCAC race last season. This year, the Bowdoin men, directed by NESCAC Coach of the Year Peter Slovenski, took the meet championship. Most Outstanding Performer Ryan Bak of Trinity won the race and the honor for the second straight year. Williams College's Neal Holtshulte was the top freshman finisher.

Brigham has led the Tufts men this season in hopes of the Jumbos qualifying for their fifth straight NCAA National Championship Race berth. Leading a team with a senior-less top seven, he has stepped up to finish as the top scorer for Tufts in five out of his six races.  His best time this year of 25:01 was run at the All-New England Championship at Franklin Park, Boston for 32nd among all of the region's best. He was sixth at the 27-team James Early Invite hosted by Westfield State College on October 19 with a 25:29.9 time.

Westfield's course will be the site of the NCAA New England Championship Race this Saturday (Nov. 16) at 11 am. Head Coach Connie Putnam's Jumbos must finish in the top five to keep their streak of consecutive national race berths going. Brigham was one of seven Jumbos to compete in the NCAA final last season.


2002 All-NESCAC Cross Country Teams