April 27, 2013
PHILADELPHIA, Pa. - Junior Emily Lipari (Greenvale, N.Y.) was named the Women's Athlete of the Meet for the Relay Events on Saturday afternoon at Franklin Field, following the conclusion of an historic weekend of competition at the Penn Relays. Lipari anchored Villanova to two Championship of America relays titles, as the Wildcats won both the distance medley relay and the 4x800 meter relay.
Villanova broke the all-time collegiate and Penn Relays records in the 4x800 relay on Saturday afternoon and doubled up with wins in the DMR and the 4x800 relays for the seventh time. In addition to running the anchor leg of both winning relays, Lipari also anchored the 4x1500 meter relay to a third place finish.
Lipari is now among the top performers in the storied history of the Wildcats women's track & field program. She becomes the third Villanovan to anchor both a winning distance medley relay and a winning 4x800 meter relay at the Penn Relays in the same year, joining Krestena Sullivan (1997) and Kathy Franey (1990) with that accomplishment.
This year marks the sixth time that a Wildcats runner has been named the Women's Athlete of the Meet for the relays. Sullivan (1997) was the last to win the honor and the other recipients have been Carole Zajac (1992), Franey (1990) and Vicki Huber (1987 and 1989).
In the anchor leg of the 4x800 meter relay on Saturday afternoon Lipari had a career best split of 2:02.25. This would rank as the fourth fastest 800 meters time in school history if it came in an individual event as opposed to a relay. Regardless of the race, Lipari helped Villanova finish with a winning time of 8:17.45, breaking the previous Penn Relays and collegiate record of 8:17.91 established by Tennessee four years ago.
The performances by Lipari this weekend and the Athlete of the Meet award continue what has been a sensational year for the Villanova junior. Prior to the Penn Relays she had already run a personal best time of 2:06.77 in the 800 meters at the Hurricane Alumni Invitational in Miami earlier this month. She also ran strong races in the both the 800 meters and the 1500 meters at the Raleigh Relays in March.
During the indoor track & field season Lipari was a first team All-American on the Wildcats distance medley relay team which recorded a runner-up finish at the NCAA Indoor Track & Field Championships. She also received second team All-America honors in the 3000 meters and was named the Mid-Atlantic Region Athlete of the Year for her efforts during the regular season. Lipari repeated as the individual BIG EAST champion in the 1000 meters and anchored Villanova to a repeat conference title in the 4x800 meter relay.
Lipari was also an All-American for the first time during the cross country season and also received All-Mid Atlantic Region and All-BIG EAST honors. When combining the cross country, indoor track and outdoor track seasons Lipari is a five-time All-American, six-time BIG EAST champion and 12-time All-BIG EAST performer.