May 22, 2013
VILLANOVA, Pa.--The official list of accepted athletes for the NCAA East Regional was announced and Villanova will send a total of 18 athletes to the regional meet. That total includes six men's athletes in three different events as well as 12 women's athletes in eight events. The NCAA East Regional will be held at North Carolina A&T from May 23-25, with all the action taking place on the Irwin Belk Track at Aggie Stadium.
Each event at the NCAA Regional features the top 48 athletes from the East Region based on their performances during the regular season. The top 12 athletes from both the East and West regional meets will advance to the NCAA Championships in Eugene, Ore. next month. Last year the Wildcats had three women and two men qualify for the national meet. The two men's athletes who were 2012 qualifers -- junior Samuel Ellison (800 meters) and sophomore Sam McEntee -- are each among the six athletes competing for Villanova at the East Regional this weekend.
Below are some of the top storylines for the Wildcats heading into this weekend's regional meet.
Villanova Top Storylines
- Junior Samuel Ellison repeated as the BIG EAST champion in the 800 meters earlier this month. He was a first team All-American last spring with an eighth place finish in the 800 meters at the NCAA Championships and during the 2013 indoor season was a second team All-American in the 800 meters.
- Sophomore Sam McEntee placed ninth in the finals of the 1500 meters at the NCAA Championships last year and will be looking for another strong finish this season.
- Each of the 12 athletes that qualified for the NCAA East Regional will be trying to advance to the NCAA Championships outdoors for the first time in their careers.
- Junior Emily Lipari was the BIG EAST champion in the 1500 meters and led Villanova to a conference title in the 4x800 meter relay. Earlier this spring Lipari was selected as the Athlete of the Meet for the Relay events at the Penn Relays after the Wildcats won Championship of America titles in the distance medley relay and the 4x800 meter relay.
- The 4x800 relay squad at the Penn Relays that consisted of Kelsey Margey, Angel Piccirillo, Nicky Akande and Emily Lipari set an all-time collegiate record with a time of 8:17.45. Each of the four has qualified individually for the NCAA East Regional in either the 800 meters or the 1500 meters.