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    Irish Cross Country Set for NCAA Great Lakes Regional

    FIGHTING IRISH Senior Patrick Smyth will try to defend his Great Lakes Regional title Saturday.
    FIGHTING IRISH
    Senior Patrick Smyth will try to defend his Great Lakes Regional title Saturday.
    FIGHTING IRISH

    Nov. 14, 2008

    NOTRE DAME, Ind. - The Notre Dame men's and women's cross country teams will compete at the NCAA Great Lakes Regional meet Saturday in West Lafayette, Ind.

    The 27th-ranked men's squad is coming off a second-place finish at the BIG EAST Conference Championships on Oct. 31. The women's team took sixth at the league meet.

    The men's team finished third at last year's regional meet. Senior Patrick Smyth returns to defend his Great Lakes title. He won last year's race with a time of 30.22. Also adding experience to the Irish lineup will be junior Jake Walker, who finished 14th a year ago, and sophomore Dan Jackson, who placed 79th.

    The Irish women will also count on experience as four of this year's eight runners competed at the regional meet a year ago. The women's squad finished 11th at the 2007 race.

    Senior Becca Bauman finished 43rd last season with a time of 22.11. Sophomore Abby Higgins returns after finishing 79th, along with juniors Beth Tacl, who was 94th, and Lindsey Ferguson, who finished 103rd.

    The women's race gets underway at 11 a.m., followed by the men at 11:45.

    The top two teams from each region automatically qualify for the NCAA Championships on Nov. 24 at Terre Haute, Ind. Thirteen at-large teams will also be selected for the national meet.

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