No. 1 Florida State delivers title-winning performance at pre-national
LOUISVILLE, Ky. -- The opportunity to get an early look at the NCAA Championship Cross Country course more than paid dividends for nationally ranked Florida State on Saturday at the NCAA Pre-Nationals Meet at the E.P. "Tom" Sawyer State Park.
Violah Lagat and Colleen Quigley finished fourth and sixth, respectively, leading top-ranked Florida State to victory against a field of 38 teams, including six other nationally ranked squads. The Seminoles edged fourth-ranked Oregon, 72-87 for the team title, with No. 8 Michigan (141 points) and No. 6 Georgetown (163) finishing third and fourth.
"That was close," FSU women's coach Karen Harvey said. "I was nervous there for a while. We learned a lot and saw some of the things we're going to have to get better. ... We just wrote our mid-term and did pretty well on it, but there's a lot more work to do before NCAA's yet."
"I was definitely happy," Harvey said of the performance." Violah [Lagat], just like outdoor track, is realizing she can be one of the best in the country and she definitely showed that [Saturday]. ... I think there's more in the tank and I'm really excited about her going into ACC's and Nationals."
Quigley, coming off her victory at the Notre Dame Invitational two weeks ago, established a personal-best time of 20:06.4 and her sixth-place finish on the heels of Hasay, the 2011 NCAA runner-up, bodes well for FSU's long-range plans this season.
Lagat, Quigley and senior co-captain Amanda Winslow ran together most of the way as the Seminoles battled the Ducks, who opened the season ranked No. 1 nationally. Winslow and fellow senior Kayleigh Tyerman helped deny the Ducks, finishing 14th and 16th, respectively, in 20:15.9 and 20:22.3. Those spots, ahead of Oregon's No. 3 runner, helped the Seminoles secure the team title.
Senior Jessica Parry sealed the deal for the `Noles with her 31st-place finish -- three spots in front of Oregon's fifth and final scoring runner -- in 20:45.9.