EUGENE, Ore. – After logging thousands of miles over their Husky track careers, it was only fitting that seniors Megan Goethals and Lindsay Flanagan cross the finish line of their last race side by side tonight after 10,000-meters at the NCAA Championships. While their finishes were not as high in the pecking order as they would have liked, the two still earned All-America Second Team honors, a first for Flanagan and the ninth All-America honor in Goethals’ career.
On the second day of the four day championships at Hayward Field, the Huskies also got a Second Team All-America effort from Katie Flood, but the junior came one place short of advancing to the final. Nick Harris and Izaic Yorks also had their seasons come to a close in the 1,500-meter semifinals, before Flanagan and Goethals finished the day in the 10k, placing 14th and 15th, respectively.
Five laps in, Goethals and Flanagan were back in the second half of the field but still attached to the main pack as the field started to string out. After another five laps, the pace increased again, and Goethals and Flanagan lost contact with the main group, and began running side by side for lap after lap. After dropping back into the last third of the field, the two began to battle back and start to work back through the field, picking off a few runners, and taking turns pushing the other forward.
On the last lap, the two climbed back up to 12th and 13th, but right at the line they were edged by two other runners closing from the outside. Still, that didn’t affect their All-America status, as Second Team honors go to the ninth through 16th finishers. Flanagan finished in 33:32.33, and Goethals went 33:32.66. The All-America honor is the ninth for Goethals, four First Teams, four Second Teams, and one cross country, giving her more All-American awards than any Husky in history, surpassing the eight of Katie Follett.
The 1,500-meters semifinals went off on a gray and windy but dry afternoon, with redshirt freshman Nick Harris up in the first heat making his NCAA debut. Harris followed a similar race plan as his two successful rounds in Fayetteville, going to fifth early and staying out of trouble. But today, Harris was unable to hold his form as he dropped back into the pack and eventually was gapped on the last lap, winding up 12th in his heat in 3:53.69.
The script unfortunately was similar for Yorks, running at his first NCAA Outdoor meet, in the second semifinal. Yorks had run a PR of 3:42.29 in the quarterfinals in Fayetteville to make it here, but after running fourth through the first 800-meters, Yorks fell back into the pack as well and wasn’t able to find another gear. He wound up 11th, and 21st overall, in 3:49.51.
Switching over to the women’s 1,500-meters, Katie Flood was back in the NCAA semis for the third time, and first since winning the title in 2012. Flood decided to take the lead in the second semifinal, looking to make for a quicker pace after a slow first semi. She held the lead for more than two laps, but had slipped back to around fifth going into the bell lap. Flood tried to make a late push but ended up eighth in 4:20.43. By setting the early pace, Flood helped the sixth and seventh finishers earn the two time qualifiers, but Flood herself was the first person out of the final. Her time was actually the eighth-fastest of the day as the top-five finishers from the first semifinal were all slower.
Friday the Huskies will look to pick up some points as Diamara Planell Cruz goes in the pole vault at 3:15 p.m., Derrick Daigre runs in the 800-meter final at 5:15 p.m., and then Liberty Miller runs in the women’s steeplechase final at 5:35 p.m.
2014 NCAA Outdoor Championships
June 12, 2014 – Day 2 of 4
Eugene, Ore. – Hayward Field
Husky Men’s Results
1,500-meters (Semifinal 1 of 2): 12. Nick Harris, 3:53.69 (24th overall; All-America honorable mention); (Semifinal 2 of 2): 11. Izaic Yorks, 3:49.51 (21st overall; All-America honorable mention).
Husky Women’s Results
1,500-meters (Semifinal 2 of 2): 8. Katie Flood, 4:20.43 (13th overall; All-America Second Team); 10,000-meters (Final): 14. Lindsay Flanagan, 33:32.33 (All-America Second Team); 15. Megan Goethals, 33:32.66 (All-America Second Team).