TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Montana State's Duncan Hamilton had a history-making performance at the NCAA Division I Men's Cross Country Championships on Saturday at Appalachee Regional Park.
Hamilton had the Bobcats' highest finish as he placed 59th overall in the individual standings with a time of 29 minutes, 45.6 seconds, in the 10-kilometer race.
The Bozeman native never fell beyond the top 90 and steadily moved up to as high as 55th by the 8K marker. He was eight seconds behind the All-America 40th-place slot with a kilometer remaining.
Hamilton's finish is the fourth highest by an individual in program history. Only Shannon Butler (1989-90), Casey Jermyn (2002) and Lyle Weese (2002) have finished higher. His championship race time is the second fastest ever, trailing only Butler's 1990 time of 29:11 that led him to a runner-up effort.
"The quality of the field was really outstanding this year," said Lyle Weese, Montana State's coach. "It's good every year, but it just seemed to be especially strong this year. The race was fast and the times were really fast.
"It was a great experience for Duncan to get in there and compete among some great runners. A lot of guys that focus on the 10K on the track, he was right there with them. That was awesome to see."
Hamilton's finish was more than 50 slots higher than his appearance at the NCAA meet in the spring of 2021. He officially completed his junior season of cross country eligibility.
MSU's Matthew Richtman finished 112th in 30:15.7. The first-time NCAA participant was outside the top 200 at the 2K mark but steadily moved up.
The Elburn, Illinois, native completed the MSU men's team's eighth-best finish at an NCAA Championship. His time is the fourth fastest in program history.
"Matt doesn't seem to get overwhelmed in races," Weese said. "He tends to start a little more conservatively and work his way up. I think he felt confident doing that again today and that showed. He just continually moved up in the race like he has all year. For him to get this experience and to barely finish out of the top 100 was great."