May 17, 2012
VILLANOVA, Pa. - Fresh off a sensational race at the Swarthmore Last Chance Meet earlier this week freshman Samuel McEntee (Perth, Australia) leads a group of seven Villanova athletes who were announced as entries for the NCAA East Regional on Thursday afternoon. The seven qualifiers for the Wildcats come in four events, including three running events and one field event. Villanova will compete in the NCAA East Regional next week from May 24-26 at Hodges Stadium in Jacksonville.
McEntee is one of three qualifiers for the Wildcats in the 1500 meters and will be joined by fifth-year senior Brian Tetreault (Cinnaminson, N.J.) and freshman Rob Denault (Aurora, Ont.). At the Swarthmore meet on Monday night McEntee ran a time of 3:36.81, which would rank third best in the nation for the outdoor season had it come during the official qualifying period for the regional meet. Earlier in the season he ran a time of 3:45.15 in the Larry Ellis Invitational at Princeton.
At the Virginia Challenge last weekend Tetreault ran his fastest time of the season in the 1500 meters, crossing the finish line in 3:45.25. He advanced to the national quarterfinals in the 1500 meters last season and has had a strong season in the 800 meters, including a fifth place finish in the BIG EAST Championships.
Denault had his strongest race of the year at the Swarthmore Meet on Monday and ran a personal best time of 3:42.26, which paced the field of 81 runners in his race. He scored team points with a fourth place finish at the BIG EAST meet and also ran well for Villanova on two relays at the Penn Relays.
Sophomores Samuel Ellison (Dresher, Pa.) and Chris Fitzsimons (Hamden, Conn.) will both run in the 800 meters at the regional meet. Ellison continued an outstanding season by winning the individual title at the BIG EAST Championships. He had a time of 1:50.99 in the finals at the BIG EAST meet and was the anchor of the Wildcats 4x800 meter relay at the Penn Relays, in addition to running the third leg of the distance medley relay.
Ellison and Fitzsimons finished first and second in the 800 meters at the BIG EAST Championships and Fitzsimons most recently ran his fastest collegiate time of 1:48.91 at the Virginia Challenge. His runner-up finish at the conference meet marked the first time in his career he earned All-BIG EAST honors.
Junior sprinter Nicoy Hines (Paterson, N.J.) qualified for the East Regional in the 400 meter hurdles. His personal best of 51.62 came at the BIG EAST Championships and earned him a fourth place finish. He ran in the Regional meet last season and advanced to the national quarterfinals of the event.
One field athlete for the Wildcats is qualified for the East Regional. Freshman Elbert Maxwell (Pittsburgh, Pa.) has had a strong season in the jumps and will compete in the long jump in Jacksonville. He came in fourth overall and second in his flight at the BIG EAST Championships with a career-best leap of 7.39 meters and most recently recorded a distance of 7.28 meters at the IC4A Championship last week. It has been a strong freshman campaign for Maxwell, who scored for Villanova in both the long jump and the high jump at the conference meet.
Start lists for the NCAA East Regional are due to be released next Tuesday in advance of the start of competition two days later.