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Verdier Leads the Field in 400 Meters on Second Day of BIG EAST Championships
Christie Verdier ran a personal best time in the 400 meters and leads the field heading into the finals on Sunday.

May 5, 2012

Live Results
Championship Central

TAMPA, Fla.--The second day of competition at the BIG EAST Outdoor Track & Field Championships is complete as of Saturday night at the USF Track & Field Stadium, where Villanova scored points in four different events to increase its two-day team score to 19.5 points. In addition to the events that finished on Saturday the Wildcats also have seven athletes that advanced to the finals on Sunday based on the results of preliminary heats.

A full day of action for Villanova came to an exciting finish when junior Bogdana Mimic (Pancevo, Serbia) used a strong final kick to earn a second place finish in the 5000 meters. She registered a time of 16:13.37 to score eight team points and finish nearly 13 full seconds ahead of the third place runner behind her.

Mimic ran near the front of the pack at the start of the race and had comfortably established herself in third place over the first 2000 meters. Midway through the race she trailed Jessica O'Connell of West Virginia in second place but was caught by runners from both Louisville and Providence before ultimately going on to make a big push in the final 1000 meters. Her finishing time was more than 30 seconds faster than the previous stadium record, which was eclipsed by each of hte first seven runners across the finish line.

Senior sprinter Christie Verdier (Baldwin, N.Y.) had the fastest time in the field in the preliminaries of the 400 meters. She ran a personal best time of 53.56 in the first heat and automatically moved on to the finals tomorrow. This is the second straight outing in which Verdier has turned in a great race for Villanova and her effort today follows up on the personal best split she had in the 400 meters in the Wildcats victorious distance medley relay race at the Penn Relays last week.



In the 1500 meters sophomore Emily Lipari (Greenvale, N.Y.) led a group of three Villanova athletes that advanced to the finals on Sunday morning. Lipari finished third in her preliminary heat and sixth overall out of 26 runners with a time of 4:25.98. Junior Ariann Neutts (Succasunna, N.J.) and freshman Courtney Chapman (Fayetteville, N.Y.) came in 10th and 11th overall, respectively. Lipari automatically advanced to the finals of the 1500 meters by placing in the top four of her heat, while Neutts and Chapman each advanced on time in their heat.

Sophomore Nicky Akande (Lawrenceville, Ga.) had a terrific race in the 800 meters and automatically qualified for the finals with a time of 2:06.34. She ran in the second preliminary heat and was one of two runners in that heat to eclipse the previous stadium record of 2:06.57 which had stood for 14 years.

The other two athletes that will compete in the finals of their events on Sunday afternoon are freshmen Varonica Johnson (Charlotte, N.C.) and Emerald Walden (Lafayette Hill, Pa.), who qualified in the 200 meters and the 100 meter hurdles, respectively. Johnson broke 24 seconds in the 200 meters for the first time in her career and established a personal best time of 23.93 in the preliminaries, where she finished third in her heat and had the eighth overall fastest time out of 25 entries. Walden came in eight out of 13 hurdlers in the 100 meter hurdles with a time of 13.97, her fastest of the season. She finished fourth in her heat and advanced on time to the finals.

In the other events that concluded on Saturday a trio of freshmen were successful in the field events and heptathlon. Jamie Klein (Hawthorne, N.J.) used the momentum she gained in winning the College section of the javelin at the Penn Relays to post a fourth place finish in the conference meet today with a throw of 45.79 meters. In the pole vault, Alexandra Wasik (Medina, Ohio) cleared a height of 3.75 meters and tied for seventh place in a field of 13 athletes.

Katherine Petruzzellis (Annandale, N.J.) finished in seventh place in the heptathlon with 4,689 points and wrapped up the competition with the final three events today. In all during the two-day multi-event Petruzzellis notched season bests in five of the seven events that make up the heptathlon, including a mark of 30.62 meters in the javelin and a time of 2:26.46 in the 800 meters on Saturday.

Cincinnati holds a slight edge over the rest of the field in the team standings with 37 points through two days of competition.


Italics indicate a new personal best time or mark in the event


Katherine Petruzzellis              7th of 13               4689 Points
100 Meter Hurdles                   8th                     15.04
Shot Put                            10th                    9.60 Meters
High Jump                           tie-3rd                 1.66 Meters
200 Meters                          10th                    26.53
Long Jump                           10th                    5.03 Meters
Javelin                             4th                     30.62 Meters
800 Meters                          6th                     2:26.46


Jamie Klein                         4th of 16               45.79 Meters

Pole Vault

Alexandra Wasik                     tie-7th of 13           3.75 Meters
Melissa Meggiolaro                  13th                    3.50 Meters

5000 Meters

Bogdana Mimic                       2nd of 22               16:13.37
Summer Cook                         22nd                    19:11.90


1500 Meters

Emily Lipari            6th of 26          4:25.98          3rd of 13 (Heat 1)
Ariann Neutts           10th               4:26.57          5th of 13 (Heat 2)
Courtney Chapman        11th               4:26.79          6th of 13 (Heat 2)
Stephanie Schappert     13th               4:30.38          6th of 13 (Heat 1)

100 Meter Hurdles

Emerald Walden          8th of 13          13.97            4th of 6 (Heat 2)

400 Meters

Christie Verdier        1st of 26          53.56            1st of 7 (Heat 1)

100 Meters

Varonica Johnson        12th of 22         11.74            4th of 8 (Heat 2)

800 Meters

Nicky Akande            4th of 24          2:06.34          2nd of 8 (Heat 3)
Erin Ryan               14th               2:10.99          5th of 8 (Heat 1)
Shannon Browne          16th               2:12.52          4th of 8 (Heat 2)
Leanne Tucker           17th               2:13.18          7th of 8 (Heat 1)

400 Meter Hurdles

Faith Dismuke           9th of 18          1:02.16          3rd of 6 (Heat 3)
Mary Bohi               13th               1:03.59          4th of 6 (Heat 2)

200 Meters

Varonica Johnson        8th of 25          23.93            3rd of 6 (Heat 1)