Tiernan and O'Sullivan Named Top Mid-Atlantic Athlete and Coach
Patrick Tiernan is the Mid-Atlantic Region Athlete of the Year.
 
Patrick Tiernan is the Mid-Atlantic Region Athlete of the Year.
 

Nov. 20, 2013

Official USTFCCCA Release

NEW ORLEANS--Freshman Patrick Tiernan (Toowoomba, Australia) was named the Mid-Atlantic Region Athlete of the Year by the United States Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) and head coach Marcus O'Sullivan was selected as the Mid-Atlantic Region Coach of the Year in an announcement on Tuesday morning. Villanova won the NCAA Mid-Atlantic Regional last week and is headed to the NCAA Championships this coming weekend.

Tiernan won the individual title at the regional meet last week with a winning time of 29:37 on the 10,000 meter Lehigh Cross Country Course. It was the second straight victory for Tiernan, who was also the BIG EAST champion earlier this month. The first-year Wildcats runner has been the team's top finisher in five consecutive meets and is the first Villanova individual champion at the NCAA Mid-Atlantic Regional since Bobby Curtis in 2007.

Earlier this season Tiernan made his collegiate debut at the Friend Big Five Invitational with a ninth place finish. Two weeks later he won the Main Line Invitational and was named the BIG EAST Athlete of the Week for that performance. Tiernan also was the top Wildcats runner at the Chile Pepper Festival and the Princeton Invitational.

Villanova is in the midst of one of its most successful seasons under O'Sullivan and is riding high with the national championships meet on tap for this coming weekend. Entering the NCAA meet the Wildcats are ranked No. 14 in the latest USTFCCCA national poll, the team's highest poll place since finishing the 2011 season at No. 13. Villanova will be making its seventh straight team appearance at the national championships, a program record. The Wildcats previously earned a berth to the NCAA meet six straight years from 1966-71.

 

 

This season is the second time that O'Sullivan has led Villanova to team titles at both the NCAA regional meet as well as the BIG EAST Championships in the same year. The conference championship was the second in three years for the Wildcats, who won with their lowest team score ever (36 points) at the BIG EAST meet. Villanova also won its first regional title since 2003 thanks to placing all five of its scoring runners in the top 12 overall. The only previous time that the Wildcats won both the BIG EAST and the regional title under O'Sullivan was in 2002.

Villanova had each of its top six runners earn All-BIG EAST and All-Mid Atlantic Region honors for their performances at the conference and regional meets. In addition to Tiernan, the top six for the Wildcats includes senior Alex Tully (Little Rock, Ark.), juniors Brian Basili (South Orange, N.J.) and Sam McEntee (Perth, Australia), and sophomores Rob Denault (Aurora, Ont.) and Jordy Williamsz (Melbourne, Australia).

The NCAA Championships will be held this Saturday at the LaVern Gibson Championship Course in Terre Haute, Ind. The men's race begins at Noon and will be streamed live on NCAA.com.

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