Cross Country At Middlebury
The Panther men's cross-country team has enjoyed great success over the past decade, winning both state and ECAC championships. In '10, the team won its first NESCAC Championship and advanced to the NCAA Championship as a team for the first time in school history. The Panthers returned to the NCAA's in '11 with a 13th place finish. A year ago, the men's squad captured its first NCAA Regional, earning a school-best eighth place finish at the NCAA Championships. The team has been competitive within the NESCAC conference and have won the state intercollegiate cross country championships 15 of the last 18 years. Individual student-athletes have earned All-NESCAC, All-ECAC, and All-New England honors. Additionally, for the last eight years the men's team has earned NCAA Coaches Association All-Academic honors.
The Panther women’s cross-country teams have built a tradition of excellence and enjoyed great success over the past two decades, winning state, conference, ECAC, New England and the 2000, 2001, 2003, 2006, 2008 and 2010 NCAA Division III Championships. The team has been one of the top squads in the country for 15 years, often holding the top spot in national coaches poll. The Panthers have qualified for the NCAA Championships in 18 of the last 19 years finishing third in 1997, seventh in 1998, second in 1999, before capturing its first NCAA crown in '00. Middlebury repeated as champions in '01 and '03, while placing second in '02, '04 and '11. The Panthers have also won 11 NESCAC Championships. Additionally, for the last 12 years the women's team has earned the U.S. Track and Cross Country Coaches Association All-Academic honors.
Training begins with a week of pre-season practice prior to the start of classes in September. The team trains each weekday at 4:30 p.m. with practices lasting from 45 minutes to two hours. The daily workouts include stretching, easy distance runs, leg speed, fartlek, strength, interval, and pool workouts. Most competitions are held each Saturday beginning the second weekend of September and running through the third weekend of November.
Middlebury’s cross-country course is considered one of the most scenic in New England. The first mile winds around the College athletic fields and then joins the Red Kelly Trail, which follows the perimeter of the College's golf course. The course consists of moderately rolling terrain with several steep hills. The surface of the course is grass, dirt, and wood chips, and is acknowledged by visiting coaches as one of the best in New England.