NC State Men, Florida State Women Claim 2011 ACC Cross Country Championships
Oct. 29, 2011
CLEMSON, S.C. - Florida State earned its fourth straight women's title, while NC State claimed the men's crown for the second time in the last three years at Saturday's ACC Cross Country Championships, held at Musser Farms in Clemson.
The Seminoles did not produce the individual champion on the women's side, but their top five runners all finished between second and sixth place to total 20 points on Saturday. Amanda Winslow led Florida State as the runner-up with a 6,000-meter time of 20:12.3, followed immediately by Hannah Brooks (20:16.8), Jessica Parry (20:20.9), Violah Lagat (20:22.4) and ACC Freshman of the Year Colleen Quigley (20:32.9).
"This was a total team effort," said Florida State Head Coach Karen Harvey. "We were pretty confident coming into today's race. This never gets old. We are very proud to represent Florida State University and the Seminoles. We really needed to run this race. Maybe being ranked No. 1, we were a little distracted, but this is the first step. We are looking forward to Nov. 21 (National Championship Meet)."
Kendra Schaaf of North Carolina ran away with the individual women's title, her first ACC championship in cross country. She breezed to a 6K time of 19:45.3, easily breaking the course record at Clemson's Musser Farms venue.
"Being a senior, it's my last season and I really wanted to go out with a win," Schaaf said. "I knew the race would go out fast because it was downhill at the start, so I just wanted to relax the first mile. I started ahead early and was able to stay out in front. The hill at the end of the race was tough, but I felt strong at the finish."
The men's championship was the 16th overall for NC State, the 15th under the direction of Head Coach Rollie Geiger. The Wolfpack also had the top two individual finishers in champion Ryan Hill and runner-up Andrew Colley. Hill won his first ACC title with an 8,000-meter time of 23:06.3, also a course record. Colley was close behind at 23:09.2. NC State's final three scorers placed 15th through 17th, giving the Wolfpack the four-point edge over defending champion Florida State.
"It never gets old hat," Geiger said. "This was a great team effort today. It's so important where your 3-4-5 runners finish. You can go 1-2 and still not win. We're proud of Ryan Hill, a very talented young man. He is committed and likes to win. It's important to have student-athletes who are committed to the program and the University."
Hill became the 12th individual men's ACC Cross Country Champion from NC State, and the first since Chris Kollar won the gold medal in 2007.
"The course was really challenging, that was one of the first things I noticed today," Hill said. "I wanted to separate from everyone before the end of the race. I didn't want to leave it to the finish. Fortunately, it played out into my hands. I put my move on with a kilometer to go. At that point, the field separated. I didn't want to leave it up to the last 100 meters."
Florida State's AJ Del Valle was named ACC Freshman of the Year for the men after he crossed the finish line in 21st position. He posted a time of 24:06.9 over the 8K competition.