May 26, 2012
JACKSONVILLE, Fla.--On the final night of competition at the NCAA East Regional at Hodges Stadium the Villanova trio of senior Sheila Reid (Newmarket, Ont.), junior Bogdana Mimic (Pancevo, Serbia) and senior Shericka Ward (Leesburg, Fla.) all advanced to the NCAA Championships site in their respective events. Reid and Mimic each qualified for the national championships race in the 5000 meters and Ward is moving on to the national semifinals in the 100 meter hurdles.
Reid will be making her fourth consecutive appearance at the NCAA Championships site for the Wildcats and Mimic will be running at the national meet for the third straight year. Both advanced automatically to the NCAA Championships by finishing in the top five of their respective sections of the 5000 meters.
In the second section of the 5000 race Reid came in third with a time of 16:13.47. The pack of runners in her heat stayed very tight for more than 2000 meters before starting to thin out towards the midpoint of the race. Reid was in third place after the first 1000 meters and moved into second place at the 2200 meters mark.
By the time the race moved into the final 2000 meters the top three runners - including Emily Sisson of Providence, Reid and Kayleigh Tyerman of Florida State - had separated themselves from the rest of the pack. This is the second consecutive year that Reid has qualified for the national championship race in the 5000 meters.
Mimic will be running in the national championship race for the third straight year after finishing in fifth place in the first section of the 5000 meters. She ran a smart race and finished with a time of 16:28.14 to earn her spot at the NCAA Championships site in Des Moines next month.
The first sign that the pack of runners in Mimic's heat was starting to break up was after 1800 meters and at that point she was in fifth place. She was never further back than sixth place from that point on and with 2000 meters left made a move up from sixth place back into the top five. Mimic and Melissa Chapman of Yale were running nearly side by side with 800 meters left but Mimic pulled away during the final lap and put a lot of distance between herself and sixth place. When all was said and done she crossed the finish line 10 seconds ahead of sixth place finisher Sara Kroll of Michigan State.
In the 100 meter hurdles Ward advanced on time to the NCAA Championships with a mark of 13.25 in her quarterfinal heat. She ran in the first of three heats and placed fifth in her heat, then had to wait out the results of the other two heats before determining if she was moving on. The top three finishers in each quarterfinal heat advanced automatically, while the next three fastest runners advanced on time.
The first heat that Ward competed in wound up being the fastest of the three heats and she is heading to the NCAA Championships for the third consecutive year. Ward was a second team All-American in the 100 meter hurdles last season.
Also in action for Villanova on Saturday were sophomores Emily Lipari (Greenvale, N.Y.) and Samantha Francis (Kingston, Jamaica). Lipari came in 11th in her quarterfinal heat in the 1500 meters with a time of 4:27.35 and Francis finished in 37th place in the triple jump with a distance of 12.19 meters.
The NCAA Championships will be held at Drake Stadium in Des Moines from June 6-9.
COMPLETE VILLANOVA RESULTS FROM SATURDAY
Samantha Francis 37th of 46 12.19 Meters
Emily Lipari 20th of 24 4:27.35 Heat 2 (11th)
100 Meter Hurdles
Shericka Ward 10th of 27 13.25 Heat 1 (5th)
Sheila Reid 3rd of 48 16:13.47 Heat 2 (3rd) Bogdana Mimic 12th 16:28.14 Heat 1 (5th)