Jan. 28, 2012
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - At the Penn State National on Saturday afternoon sophomore Samuel McEntee (Perth, Australia) broke the four-minute mark in the Mile with a time of 3:57.86 on the Horace Ashenfelter III Indoor Track and in the process automatically qualified for the NCAA Indoor National Championships later this season. Villanova spent the last two days in competition at the Penn State meet and McEntee's great run in the Mile highlighted a number of strong performances.
No individual achievement better defines the excellence of the Villanova men's track & field program than the running of a sub-4:00 mile. McEntee is the 34th athlete in school history to run either a sub-4:00 mile or the 1500 meters equivalent (3:42.20). Collectively this group of 34 elite runners has combined for 638 races with times that include 342 sub-4:00 miles and 296 equivalent 1500 meters times.
McEntee is the 10th athlete under Wildcat head coach Marcus O'Sullivan to achieve the sub-4:00 feat and the first since recent graduate Matthew Gibney achieved both a sub-4:00 mile and a 1500 meters equivalent during the past calendar year. O'Sullivan is himself one of the great milers in history, with 101 sub-4:00 miles and another 83 equivalent times.
In his race on Saturday afternoon McEntee finished third out of 20 competitors in the invitational section of the Mile at this weekend's meet. He becomes the first Villanova athlete this season to automatically qualify for the national championships, which will be held on March 9-10 and hosted by Boise State in Nampa, Idaho.
McEntee established a personal best time in the Mile and shattered his previous top time by 12 seconds. As a freshman last season he registered a time of 4:09.84 at the 2011 New Balance Collegiate Invitational at the New York Armory.
The other top results this weekend for the Wildcats include sophomore Samuel Ellison (Dresher, Pa.) and redshirt freshman Chris Fitzsimons (Hamden, Conn.) finishing third and seventh, respectively, in the invitational section of the 800 meters. Ellison crossed the finish line with a time of 1:49.35 while Fitzsimons registered a time of 1:51.06.
Ellison established a personal best time in the 800 meters with his run and eclipsed his previous best by nearly two seconds. In addition to his individual race he also ran the third leg of the 4x400 meter relay and had a split of 47.5.
In the invitational section of the 1000 meters redshirt freshman Chris O'Sullivan (Havertown, Pa.) came in eighth place with a time of 2:29.39. He also ran the leadoff leg of the invitational distance medley relay, in which Villanova finished fourth with a time of 9:48.64. O'Sullivan had a split of 2:59 in the leadoff 1,200 meter leg and was followed by freshman Cory Serfoss (Easton, Pa.) in the 400 meters (50.5), Fitzsimons in the 800 meters (1:52) and senior Brian Tetreault (Cinnaminson, N.J.) in the 1600 meters (4:06).
Freshman Elbert Maxwell (Pittsburgh, Pa.) had the top result in the field events for the Wildcats with an eighth place finish in the long jump, where he registered a distance of 6.95 meters.
Villanova will next compete in the New Balance Collegiate Invitational on February 3-4 at the New York Armory.
NOTES: McEntee came to Villanova last January and competed during the 2011 indoor season for the Wildcats, where he was a BIG EAST scorer in the Mile with a sixth place finish ... This past fall he earned All-Mid Atlantic Region and All-BIG EAST honors in cross country while helping Villanova to a 13th place finish at the NCAA Cross Country Championships in Terre Haute, Ind. ... Graduate student Brian Long (Louisville, Ky.) competed this weekend as an unattached runner and finished second in the invitational section of the 3000 meters with a time of 8:11.12 ... Long is in his fifth year with the Wildcats and his final year of athletic eligibility.
COMPLETE VILLANOVA RESULTS
Bryan Murphy 18th of 32 50.29 Carlton Bowers 26th 50.67
Philip O'Connell 10th of 26 1:55.79
800 Meters (Invitational)
Samuel Ellison 3rd of 15 1:49.35 Chris Fitzsimons 7th 1:51.06
Charlie Bates 8th of 15 2:30.90 Dusty Solis 10th 2:32.00
1000 Meters (Invitational)
Chris O'Sullivan 8th of 10 2:29.39
Chris Pietrocarlo 5th of 7 4:14.11
Samuel McEntee 3rd of 20 3:57.86
Alex Tully 3rd of 15 8:26.92
3000 Meters (Invitational)
Joseph LoRusso 13th of 14 8:23.85
4x400 Meter Relay
Villanova 10th of 17 3:17.85 Nicoy Hines Carlton Bowers Samuel Ellison 47.5 Bryan Murphy
Distance Medley Relay (Invitational)
Villanova 4th of 8 9:48.64 Chris O'Sullivan 1200 Meters 2:59 Cory Serfoss 400 Meters 50.5 Chris Fitzsimons 800 Meters 1:52 Brian Tetreault 1600 Meters 4:06
Elbert Maxwell tie-14th of 18 1.95m
Elbert Maxwell 8th of 23 6.95m
Frank Anuszewski 18th of 18 14.21m
Frank Anuszewski 16th of 23 16.42m
Villanova Athletes Competing UNATTACHED
3000 Meters (Invitational)
Brian Long 2nd of 14 8:11.12