Alex Phillip crowned NCAA DIII Men’s Cross Country National Champion


JCU Sports Information Department

The John Carroll University Men’s Cross Country Team on Saturday, Nov. 20 after finishing fourth in the country at the NCAA Division III Championships

Anna Meyer, Sports Editor

Throughout the whole John Carroll University Men’s Cross Country season, Alex Phillip ‘23 could not be stopped. 


On Saturday, Nov. 20, the same remained true for Phillip as the Blue and Gold competed in the NCAA Division III Men’s Cross Country Championships in Louisville, Kentucky. 


Phillip led the way for John Carrol, becoming the first ever NCAA Men’s Cross Country National Champion in the history of the JCU Men’s Cross Country program. 


“It still hasn’t set in yet,” said Phillip after the race. “It is really nice to see all of our guys put their hearts on the line today. Seeing everything come together after two years of COVID and waiting for this moment for two years made a lot.” 


Overall, the John Carroll Blue Streaks captured a fourth-place finish, bringing back an NCAA Championship Trophy to University Heights for the first time ever. This was also the first ever top 10 finish for John Carroll at the NCAA Championships. 


“It honestly is surreal right now,” said John Carroll Men’s Cross Country Head Coach Kyle Basista. “I am not really sure how to feel. Coming into this race, this was the hope and expectation, but to do it on the day, is the hardest part. I’m sure Alex will tell you there was nothing easy about that race, but for it to actually happen, I can’t effectively put it into words.” 


In the 8K race, Phillip was crowned the individual champion after finishing with a time of 23:27. In the last seconds of the race, Phillip pulled away, resulting in the victory. 


“About 800 out, I was a little bit nervous I was going to lose,” admitted Phillip. “A runner’s high came over me with 400 left and I knew I could get it and I knew how badly I wanted it. I kicked past him and it is the best feeling I have ever had in my life. I am trying to take in everything right now.” 


Alex Phillip on Saturday, Nov. 20 after finishing with the top time in the country in the 8K at the NCAA Division III National Championship (JCU Sports Information Department )

Phillip’s time was a career best, as his previous best time was 23:39, which came earlier this season in the Lehigh Paul Short Run on Oct. 1. His finishing time also set a national championship record time on the EP Tom Sawyer Course. 


Jamie Dailey was one of the main contributors in the race for John Carroll’s fourth place finish as Dailey finished with a time of 24:06, taking home 16th place in the country and receiving All American honors for the second time in his career. 


Ryan Champa ‘25, Barrett Scheatzle ‘25, Ian Pierson ‘22, graduate student Andrew Miner and Jared Arnold ‘22 all ran for the Blue Streaks in the NCAA DIII National Championship as well, putting points up for the Blue and Gold.


“It is huge, it took me a while, but I got emotional about 15-20 minutes after,” said Basista. “Texts start coming in, I see the alumni on the course and the other teammates coming in across the finish line. I realized we built something here. To see all of that and all the hard work pay off today is so special.” 


A complete list of results from the NCAA DII Championships can be found here