First-year coach Breeda Dennehy used 1996 as a rebuilding season for the Lady
Seminole cross country program. Dennehy saw a young squad, with just one senior
on it’s roster, improve and gain experience as the season progressed.
The FSU women began the ’96 campaign with a fifth place finish (14 teams) at the
Audubon Invitational in New Orleans. The lone senior, Heather Anderson, led the
way with a 22nd place finish. Following Anderson in the scoring column were
Nicole Singleton (25th), Diana Hartnup (29th), Lara Bryant (31st) and Nickie
In Tallahassee, the Lady Seminoles placed fifth among 12 teams at the 5K
Seminole Cross Country Invitational. Anderson again set the pace, finishing
tenth, while Singleton crossed the line 13th. Hartnup, Kathleen Bowen and
Chateau Mangaroo completed the top five.
Singleton, a junior, led the way at the Barnett Bank Invitational in Gainesville
as FSU finished third among 10 teams. Singleton placed seventh overall while
Hartnup (12th), Anderson (18th), Mangaroo (25th) and Emilie Ruetenik (34th)
rounded out the scoring.
After a 28th place finish at the 42-team Auburn Invitational, the Lady Seminoles
traveled to Tampa for the Florida Intercollegiate Championships. Behind a solid
performance from freshman Hartnup, FSU managed a 12th place finish (19 teams).
Hartnup took 24th overall while Singleton, Megan Lenker, Karen Boor and Nadi
Vlaun also contributed among FSU’s top five.
The ACC Championships gave the Lady Seminoles an indication of how much
improvement that must be made with the goal of competing in one of the toughest
cross country conferences in the nation. Singleton was the top again the top
finisher, placing 33rd, as FSU recorded a disappointing ninth place effort.
Anderson, Mangaroo, Bournias and Ruetenik were the other four FSU scorers.
The ACC’s dominance was evident at the NCAA District III Championships with five
conference teams finishing among the top nine. The Florida State women
concluded the ’96 campaign by placing 35th in the 46-team field. Singleton
continued to run impressively, pacing the team with an overall finish of 88th.
The Lady Seminoles went through their share of adversity during the ’96 season
and with the difficult challenges came much needed experience. Despite
finishing ninth at the ACC Championships, the FSU women recorded several
impressive team performances during the year while also improving individual