March 4, 2013
NEW ORLEANS--Junior middle distance runner Emily Lipari (Greenvale, N.Y.) has been named the Mid-Atlantic Region Track Athlete of the Year, as announced by the United States Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCA) this morning. Lipari has had a phenomenal indoor campaign for Villanova and will continue her season at the NCAA Indoor Track & Field Championships this weekend.
Lipari will double up in the distance medley relay and the 3000 meters at the national championships. Earlier this season she anchored the Wildcats to a time of 10:56.74 in the DMR at the New York Armory, a mark which ranks No. 2 in the nation heading into this weekend.
Most recently Lipari ran the 14th best mark in the country in the 3000 meters, when she clocked a time of 9:08.91 at the Columbia Last Chance Meet this past weekend. The mark is more than 11 seconds faster than her previous personal best set earlier in the year, and a full 20 seconds faster than her career best prior to this season. Lipari moved into the top 16 in the nation with last Saturday's race to secure her spot in the field at the national championships.
The individual and relay performances by Lipari this season have enabled Villanova to have its share of team success as well. At the BIG EAST Championships last month Lipari repeated as the individual champion in the 1000 meters, anchored the Wildcats to a repeat victory in the 4x800 meter relay and also finished seventh in the Mile, with all three of those races coming just a few hours apart on the final day of the conference meet.
She registered a career best time of 2:46.19 in the 1000 meters at the BIG EAST meet and also ran a time of 4:46.68 in the Mile. In thd 4x800 meter relay she ran down the leader from Notre Dame in the final 50 meters and finished her anchor leg with a split of 2:06, including an incredible 59-second final lap.
Lipari is already a two-time All-American during the indoor season, having received the honor in 2011 (distance medley relay) and 2012 (Mile). Counting both the indoor and outdoor seasons she is now a six-time BIG EAST champion and has a total of 10 top-three finishes at conference meets.
The NCAA Indoor Track & Field Championships will be held this Friday and Saturday at the Randal Tyson Track in Fayetteville, Ark. Following official declarations for the championships the final field of participants will be announced tonight after 8 p.m.