NCAA Day 2 Results
June 7, 2013
EUGENE, Ore. - Thursday belonged to the Florida State distance runners at the NCAA Championship, with senior Mike Fout providing the Seminoles with their first points of the meet for the men with his fourth-place finish in the 10,000 meters.
Running his final race as a Seminole, Fout stayed with the lead pack throughout the 25-lap test of physical and mental endurance at Hayward Field, determined not to be denied a place on the podium. While Arizona's Lawi Lalang ran away with the win, Fout put himself in the thick of a late-race shuffle for the next four spots, which were separated by just over one full second.
"I'm proud of my team, I'm proud of the way I ran today and I'm proud to wear that Seminole singlet one last time," Fout said, afterward. "It was 25 laps and it was very hard, but this kind of defines who we are and hopefully how I've run the last five years at FSU.
Fout finished in 29:42.23 in his third consecutive NCAA Championship 10,000 appearance and scored the first points by a Seminole distance runner at the meet since 2008. He matched Herb Wills' fourth-place NCAA finish in 1980 for the best by a Seminole in school history at the distance.
"It's not my fastest time, by any means," Fout said. "It's not first, but at the end of the day, to come out here and compete - just hang tough in a very difficult race - and to do it for the Seminoles, I just wanted to run tough."
"We needed that, and the way Mike did it - competing for second place and fighting the way he did fearlessly for a giant score for our team - I was real proud," Florida State head coach Bob Braman said. "We are on the board. Maybe we can get a little momentum going for the guys."
Senior Breandan O Neill placed ninth (29:53.25), one spot out of scoring with a strong closing lap.
Fout's scoring performance was not the only highlight from the distance crew. Sophomore Linden Hall and senior Amanda Winslow advanced to the finals of the 1500-meter run and sophomore Colleen Quigley advanced from the 3000-meter steeplechase semifinals. All three will compete in Saturday's finals.
Hall provided the biggest surprise of the day, earning a spot in the finals on time in the 1500 (4:15.51) after placing sixth in the first heat. Her four-second, personal-best came despite a serious bout of nerves.
"This is the first time I've ever run in and anything this big and I was kind of terrified the whole race," said Hall, who suffered a broken foot during cross country season and did not begin track workouts until February. "I was waiting for it to go (faster) and a little edgy the whole time. ...
"It's awesome. I was stoked to be here. I was ranked 23rd. I guess whatever happens on the day. I definitely knew I could run faster than I had run. My workouts have been really good the last couple of weeks and I'm happy with where I am."
Winslow took a different approach in the second heat, moving to the front early and setting the pace. She qualified automatically with a second-place finish in 4:16.59.
"I ended up leading a lot more than the plan was," Winslow said. "It's kind of funny, we had these little cards that the girls made us from an elementary school and mine said, `Set the pace.' Maybe that was what was meant to be. I set the pace and it ended up being just slow enough for Linden to sneak in. I'm pretty happy."
FSU women's distance coach Karen Harvey, who will have two women in the 1500 final for the second consecutive year, was elated with the performances of Hall and Winslow.
"She was poised," Harvey said of Hall. "She was on the inside of the track with nowhere to go but did not panic. She's on the biggest stage of her life, not in good position for at least two laps, and her wind-up - which is what we've been practicing - was exactly what got her into the final. It was that last 100 and 50-meter push."
Harvey was pleased to see how Winslow handled challenges for the lead throughout the early stages of the race, which could serve her well in Saturday's final.
"I'm really excited about her for Saturday," Harvey said. "We took a little break after regionals and I believe it's going to come in her favor. She's just got to be ready on Saturday to run the hardest 1500 of her career."
Quigley cruised to an automatic spot in the finals with a second-place finish in heat two (10:00.23), which was fourth-fastest on the day, and just behind heat winner Amber Henry (9:58.82) of Weber State.
"She had lots of composure," Harvey said. "The composure today was good to see, because the last 800 meters on Saturday, she will not have time to be composed."
Junior Anne Zagre came within .02 seconds of advancing to the finals of the 100-meter hurdles, but her consolation prize was a new school record. Zagre (13.01) finished fourth in the third heat, which produced the collegiate record by Clemson's Brianna Rollins (12.47). Her performance smashed the record held by former Olympian Kim Batten (13.06) since 1991.
Stefan Brits was unable to match his sixth-place NCAA Indoor Championship finish in the long jump as he managed a best of only 7.65m (25-1.25).
The Seminoles' Friday schedule is less hectic, but no less more important.
Dentarius Locke will attempt to and back up the fastest collegiate 100-meter time in the country this season (9.97), set in the semifinal round, in the finals at 8:10 p.m. (ET). James Harris will pull a double-shift, competing in the high jump (6:20 p.m.) and the 400-meter dash finals (9:05 p.m.). Harris had the second-fastest qualifying time in Wednesday's 400 semifinal round (45.23).
"Sprints has been our bellcow and it's time for us to get in there and help out and we did that," said Braman, who heads up the men's distance runners. "I think we're going to get points in the javelin, in the high jump and then we're going to get our traditional sprint points. Maybe we can chase a podium (finish). That's what we're here for."
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Live Results: http://www.flashresults.com/2013_Meets/outdoor/06-05-NCAA/live/