Feb. 18, 2014
NEW YORK - Senior distance runner Emily Lipari (Greenvale, N.Y.) has been named the BIG EAST Female Track Athlete of the Week for the second time this season. The weekly conference awards were announced on Tuesday morning and Lipari receives the honor after being part of the field for the famous Wanamaker Mile at the Millrose Games last weekend.
In a race that included mostly professional runners and just two affiliated collegiate athletes Lipari ran the fastest mile race of her career at the New York Armory on Saturday afternoon. She crossed the finish line in 4:35.24 and broke her previous personal best by more than two seconds. The race was nationally-televised on NBC Sports Network and Lipari came in eighth overall in a field of 12 runners.
Lipari is having another terrific season for Villanova and is ranked nationally in both the Mile and the 3000 meters. Her time at the Millrose Games ranks her third nationwide for the year and she is also currently ranked 13th in the 3000 meters. Lipari ran the 3000 meters at the Penn State National last month and finished with a time of 9:09.37.
In addition to her individual events Lipari also anchored the Wildcats distance medley relay which has the eighth fastest time in the country. That race also took place at the Penn State National and Villanova posted a time of 11:04.54. Sophomore Angel Piccirillo (Homer City, Pa.) led off the DMR, while junior Varonica Johnson (Charlotte, N.C.) and senior Nicky Akande (Lawrenceville, Ga.) ran ahead of Lipari's anchor leg.
Lipari has received weekly recognition from the BIG EAST five times during her career, including the two indoor awards this season. She was also the indoor female athlete of the week for the week ending January 16-22, 2012 and received the honor twice during the cross country season this past fall.
Villanova will compete in the BIG EAST Championships this weekend at the Armory, with competition beginning on Friday morning and wrapping up on Saturday night. A preview of the conference meet will be posted on Wednesday afternoon.