Chris Brown ’12 earned his first career All-American honor this past week at the NCAA Division III indoor track and field championships at Grinnell College in Iowa.
The third-seeded Brown had the fastest time in the preliminaries the day before the race with a time of 4:12.57, beating Kevin McCarthy of Wabash by just .17 seconds. Brown’s time was a record at the Grinnell facility. The following day in the finals, Brown ran in the middle of the pack for most of the race, staying between fifth and seventh place. When McCarthy surged to the lead in the final quarter-mile of the race, Brown attempted to catch him with a kick in the final lap. Although Brown was unable to catch McCarthy for the title, his kick propelled him to a third place finish with a time of 4:11.24. McCarthy beat Brown’s short-lived record with a time of 4:08.93, less than a second behind the Division III championship record.
“I’m really proud of [Brown’s] performance,” Brandeis head coach John Evans said in a Brandeis Athletics press release. “He had taken a big step this season and to finish third in his first national track championship is a great achievement.”
Brown said “it feels good” to be an All-American. “If you had told me at the beginning of the year, I would have been really excited. It’s been a long process from freshman year.
“I had slight improvements in my times my freshman and sophomore year, but this past year I had a really big jump.”
With his third place finish, Brown became the first All-American male at the NCAA Division III track and field championships since 2005, when Ryan Parker ’06 finished as the runner-up in the 800-meter race. Brown earned six points for the Judges to help Brandeis into a six-way tie for 27th place out of the 60 schools that scored points. The Judges placed eighth among New England schools and second among UAA schools, just behind Washington University.
On the women’s side, Kate Warwick ’12 placed 12th in the 5,000-meter run.
Third-seeded Warwick ran with a big pack for the first 2,000 meters of the race. When a lead pack emerged featuring two runners, including eventual meet champions Wartburg College and Johns Hopkins University, Warwick stayed near the front of the second pack. While the front two runners increased their lead, Warwick fell off the pace, eventually finishing in 12th place with a time of 17:53.35, roughly 35 seconds out of a top eight finish, which would have earned her All-American status. Since Warwick was the only competitor for the Judges, Brandeis was unable to score any points at the meet.