Women's Cross Country Team Captures Podium Finish At NCAA Championships

Nov. 21, 2015


Louisville, Ky. -

The Providence College women's cross country team earned a fourth-place team finish today (Nov. 21) at the NCAA Championships for the program's third podium finish in the last four years. Senior Sarah Collins (Basel, Switzerland) and junior co-captain Catarina Rocha (Peabody, Mass.) each earned All-America honors to lead the team.

The race got out to a quick start at E.P. Tom Sawyer Park. Collins sat right at the front of the lead pack for the first half of the race. At the 4km mark, Collins had dropped to the back of the pack but held her position among the top-25 individuals. She finished the race with 20th-place overall in a time of 20:11.2, marking her third career cross country All-America honor.

Rocha used her experience and ran a well-controlled race, picking up 11 spots over the second half of the race to place 39th (20:26.8) as the second Friar across the line. Rocha earned her second career All-America honor with the top-40 finish. 

Senior Lauren Mullins (Binghamton, N.Y.) was just a few seconds behind Rocha for the majority of the race. With a mile to go, Mullins lost her shoe but still powered home, picking up 29 spots over the second half of the race, to grab 62nd-place in a time of 20:37.5 over the 6km course.

The sophomore duo of Katie Lembo (Penfield, N.Y.) and Brianna Ilarda (Perth, Australia) ran the majority of the race together and were side-by-side at the half-way mark. Lembo moved up 29 places from 3km through to the finish, to capture 101st (20:50.3), while Ilarda finished just six seconds behind Lembo in 114th (20:56.8).

Senior Molly Keating (Rehoboth, Mass.) saved her best collegiate cross country race for last. Keating surged through the field over the last half of the race, improving by 28 places to finish 133rd in a time of 21:03.4 as Providence’s No. 6 runner.

Junior Emily Bushey (Vernon, N.J.) rounded out the Friars’ top-7 runners. Bushey grabbed the 179th-spot in a time of 21:25.0.

“We are very happy to be on the podium for the third time in four years,” said head coach Ray Treacy. “The women were excellent today. They fought hard and came right through the field to get on the podium. I’m really happy for Sarah and Cat to make All-American again.”

At the end of the race, Providence totaled 231 points to finish fourth, just 16 points behind the third-place team, Oregon. Next year, the Friars will return seven of their top eight runners from the 2015 team.




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