The Bowdoin teams will be competing in the NCAA Division III New England Regional Cross Country Championships Saturday at the Narragansett Elementary School in Gorham.

This year’s regional meet shapes up as one of the best as seven teams are ranked among the top-35 in the Nov. 6 USTFCCCA (United State Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association) Division III poll.

Williams College leads the parade of nationally-ranked teams, placing fourth, followed closely by NESCAC rival Middlebury College, tied for sixth.

Tufts (13th), M.I.T. (16th), Bowdoin College (21st), Colby College (26th) and Bates College (32nd) have all graced the national poll all season.

Middlebury won last year’s regional title with 91 points. Bowdoin finished second followed by Bates, Williams and Tufts. Last year’s individual champion is senior Coby Horowitz of Bowdoin.

The top two teams will receive the New England region’s two automatic qualifying spots for the NCAA Division III National Championship race on Nov. 23 at Hanover, Ind., hosted by Hanover College.

“We just call it the Narragansett School course,” said Bowdoin coach Peter Slovenski.

Those Polar Bears competing include James Boeding, Horowitz, Nick Saba, Sam Seekins, Greg Talpey, Avery Wentworth and Kevin Hoose for the men, and Lucy Skinner, Madelena Rizzo, Brenna Fischer, Reaha Goyetche, Gillian Kramer, Caroline Corban and Ally Fulton on the women’s side.

“The men are running to place in the top-five out of 50 teams,” said Slovenski. “The top five teams will be selected to go to the national race in Hanover (L.S. Ayres Athletic Complex) next week.

“The women are hoping to finish in the top 10 of 50 teams.

“A big race with 50 teams is a challenge because we want to be patient and not go out too fast,” added Slovenski. “But, there will be a lot of congestion on the trails for runners who are trying to move up later in the race. We’ll strike a balance between the best pacing, and the best position in the first mile.

“We’ve got a lot of experienced seniors in the race. The class of 2014 has been an exceptional class of runners for Bowdoin.”

The Bowdoin men were second a year ago. The Bowdoin women were 12th. The men qualified for nationals and went on to place 16th at the Nationals in Indiana.

“Two schools will be selected automatically and two, three or possibly four more might be selected for the national championship race with at-large invitations,” said Slovenski.

The 8,000-meter men’s race will go off at noon, while the women’s 6,000 event kicks off at 11 a.m.

The women’s field features six teams that were ranked among the top 25 in the Nov. 6 USTFCCCA (United State Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association) Division III poll.

Second-ranked Middlebury College leads the parade of nationally-ranked teams, followed closely by M.I.T. in fourth place and NESCAC rival Williams College in sixth. All three teams have been ranked among the top-10 all season.

Comments are not available on this story.