BOSTON, MA (February 23, 2013) – The Sacred Heart women's track & field team took home fourth place at the 2013 New England Championship held at Boston University's Track and Tennis Center this weekend. SHU senior Alyssa Selmquist (Northford, CT) led the Pioneers in the distance events, winning the New England title in the 5,000 meters. Selmquist along with junior Patrick Peterson (Gloversville, NY) who won New England title in the mile for the men, represent the 32nd and 33rd individual New England Champions in SHU program history and the first in the mile or 5,000 meters.
The Pioneers finished with 51 total points and had eight All-New England performances on the weekend. The University of Connecticut took home the New England Championship with 149.33 total points.
Selmquist ran her fastest time of the season In the 5,000 meters, winning the event with a time of 16:49.55. She finished six seconds in front of the field to earn her first career New England title. Selmquist led three SHU finishers in the top-eight in the event.
Junior Brianna Castrogiovanni (Commack, NY) finished third in the event, clocking in with a time of 17:01.30. Senior Michelle Navarro (Piscataway, NJ) ran a season-best time of 17:44.50 to finish in the scoring with an eighth place finish. Selmquist's 5,000 time was a personal best and school record, breaking the record of 16:58.45 set by Castrogivanni in winning the NEC title two weeks ago. Selmquist has improved on her personal best by more than 40 seconds this season. Navarro's time was also a personal best.
The duo of Castrogiovanni and Selmquist also impressed in the 3,000 meters, finishing second and third, respectively. Both turned in season best times with Casrtrogiovanni crossing the tape in 9:41.36 and Selmquist coming in at 9:42.98. Both earned All-New England honors in both the 3,000 and 5,000 events. Castrogivanni and Selmquist both broke the school record in the 3,000 meters that Castrogivanni set in the Terrier Invitational in late January at 9:45.48. Both have improved on their personal bests by more than 25 seconds this year. Though she didn't place, Navarro also recorded a personal best of 10:05.23, and she has lowered her best by more than 33 seconds this season.
Junior Katelyn Racanelli (Riverside, CT) had a strong showing on the track as well finishing second in the 500 meter dash with a time of 1:13.90, her fastest time this indoor season. Racanelli's time was a personal best and new school record. She crushed the old record of 1:15.12, which she set in last year's New England meet. Sophomore Asiha Wright (Cheshire, CT) also had a season best time, finishing fifth in the 60 meter dash with a time of 7.70 seconds to earn All-New England honors. Wright's time tied the personal best she set in last year's New England meet. Only Angelica Johnson (7.65 in 2011) has run faster in program history.
Junior Lindsay Aponte (West Islip, NY) earned All-New England honors after taking home second place in the shot put, registering a throw of 49'9.25". It was Aponte's top-throw this season in the shot put and puts her at the top of the NEC performance list. Aponte's throw was a personal best – she set her old best in the NEC Championship two weeks ago. She has had an impressive run in New England Championships.
Aponte has had an impressive run at the New Englands in her career. In five opportunities at the annual meet, she has won two outdoor New England shot put titles (2011 and 2012), one indoor New England shot put title (2012), and finished second indoors in 2011 and 2013. Only Marsha Locke (15.44 meters/50' 8" in 2008) has thrown further SHU program history.
The Pioneer women's 4x400 meter relay team of Nicolette Sands (West Hempstead, NY), Bridget Carey (St. James, NY), Shay Cronin (Prospect, CT) and Racanelli also set a school record at the meet. The foursome clocked in at 3:57.74.
The Pioneers are back in action at the ECAC Indoor Championship next weekend at the Reggie Lewis Center in Boston.