April 1, 2006
Stanford, Calif. – The Stanford Invitational is the best distance meet for the Florida State track and field team. Senior Andrew Lemoncello (St. Andrews, Scotland/Stirling) set the FSU 10,000m school record and four of the five women moved into FSU’s all-time top ten list for the first time in their events. All five women’s runners finished with NCAA East Regional qualifying times while Lemoncello earned an automatic berth to nationals in his event.
Last year at the same meet Lemoncello finished eleven seconds slower than the FSU all-time school record. This year, he made sure he took care of business besting the program’s top 10K mark by a second, running 28:32.92 for fourth place in the first section. The reginig ACC 10K Champion is the only Seminole to hold the top spot in two events. The outdoor 3K steeplechase All-American and school record holder bettered a three-year old mark of 28:33.81 set by Joep Tigchelaar at the Stanford Invitational in 2003. Florida State’s only two-time league cross country champion also ensured a spot at nationals, crossing the tape 13 seconds faster than this year’s automatic qualifying time of 28:45.00.
The women’s distance group also found similar success. Junior Barbara Parker (Norfolk, England/Loughborough) ran a strong race, taking third place in the 3000m steeplechase in 10:24.75, almost 25 seconds faster than the NCAA East Region qualifying standard of 10:50.00. Newcomer Lydia Willemse (Forest, Ontario/St. Christopher) will join her at the meet in Greensboro, N.C., with her sixth place, 3000m steeple career best time of 10:28.20 and moves her into third place on FSU’s all-time list.
Section one of the women’s 5000m saw freshman Susan Kuijken (Nijmejor, Netherlands/Steoelijk Gymnasium) put on one of the best performances by a rookie in Seminole history and the fourth fastest freshman in the race on Friday evening. Her time of 16:20.30 puts her on a few lists – NCAA East Region 5000m start list, second all-time in the FSU school record book and at the top of the 5000m on the ACC women’s performance list.
Led by NCAA runner-up, redshirt senior Natalie Hughes (Grand Junction, Colo./Palisade) section two of the women’s 5000m was one of the top races for the day for the women, with the All-American running the third-fastest time in FSU program history at 16:27.27 for second place in the event. Newcomer Abbie Wilshire (Bristol, England/Birmingham) was right behind with a clip of 16:45.77 for 17th place and the fourth fastest time ever in the women’s program history.