March 27, 2004
Tallahassee – The Florida State men’s and women’s track and field squads continue its split coast competition, with one group in Palo Alto, CA at the prestigious Stanford Invite and the other group is just down the road in Gainesville, participating in the Florida Relays.
“We had five lifetime bests,” said head coach Bob Braman. “That’s a pretty good outing at any race. In the 1500m, Tom and Natalie ran third fastest and Helen ran second fastest. Gill and Rachel automatically qualified which was great for them. Running (at the Stanford Invite) is a great race to compete at but specifically in the distance area. I couldn’t be more pleased at how well everyone did.”
In Palo Alto, a small group of distance runners began making an even bigger mark on the national scene. Senior Vicky Gill (Lancashire, England/St. Andrews) won the 10000m run in a time of 32:48.63, good for an NCAA East Regional qualifying mark. Gill’s time sets a new school record, marking the third time the third-year Seminole has broken the mark. Senior Rachel Evjen (Eau Claire, WI/Northwestern), coming off an amazing indoor track and field season, will join Gill in the event, posting a time of 34:01.41 to beat the regional mark of 34:10.
Senior Joep Tigchelaar (Macharen, Netherlands/Titus Branasma) set the school record and posted a personal best mark in the 5000m event finishing the 5K course in 13:46.01. Tigchelaar, who broke a 32-year-old record in 2003, shattered the previous mark of 13:53.26 set by Herb Willis in 1982. The time also adds Tigchelaar to the list of regional qualifiers. Junior Ian Hornabrook (Southport, Australia/Rend Lake College) posted a time of 14:11.82 in the 5k and sophomore Kevin Cook (Fern Park, FL/Lyman) followed with a mark of 14:48.36.
Junior Eddie Rodriguez (Miami, FL/FIU) ran his best time ever in the 10000m debut. Freshman Tom Lancashire (Bolton, England/Turton) posted a 1500m time of 3:45.58 to qualify for east regionals. Junior Natalie Hughes (Palisades, CO/Palisade) ran a 4:19.01 in the 1500m event to join the group of Seminoles headed to Gainesville. Senior Helen Hofstede (Hoogharspel, Netherlands/RSG Enhhuizen) recorded a 1500m time of 4:24.47 to join Hughes in the event.
Junior Willie Johnson (Orlando, FL/Edgewater) joined the growing group of Seminoles heading back to Gainesville, FL in late May to compete at the NCAA East Regionals. A 2003 All-American, Johnson posted a mark of 51′ in the triple jump event, finishing in third place and take his place atop the ACC triple jump leaderboard. Johnson is the first Seminole to qualify for the triple jump event in the conference.
The men’s 4x100m relay team (sophomore Derrick Baker (Miami, FL/Northwestern), senior Brian Dzingai (Harare, Zimbabwe/Truman State), freshman Cedric Nabe (Geneva, Switzerland/Lycee St. Joseph), junior Rhoan Sterling (Ontario, Canada/Toledo) bettered its already regional qualifying time of 39.57 to take second place, behind the Gainesville All Stars, finishing the distance in a time of 39.55.
The 4x400m women’s relay team posted a time of 3:39.17. The group was comprised of sophomore Kim Adams (Stone Mountain, GA/Stone Mountain), freshman Dana Massiah (Trinidad and Tobago/Bishop Anesty), sophomore Evelyne-Cynthia Niako (Stone Mountain, GA/Stephenson), and senior Tamara Campbell (Orlando, FL/Evans).
The Seminoles head to Atlanta, GA to compete at the Georgia Tech Invite from April 1-3, 2004. A small contingent of Seminoles will also travel to the Texas Relays to face some of the top teams in the nation and add more regional qualifiers to the already growing list.