Gopher freshman Hassan Mead placed 6th and earned all-America distinction in last night's NCAA 5000m final running 13:44.30.
Villanova senior Bobby Curtis won the race in 13:33.93.
“It was exactly the type of race I was hoping for,” Mead (pictured #6) said in a Gopher media release. “The pace was fast, not like Thursday’s trial. I was hoping we’d get out there and really run, and we did."
Mead's performance broke Andrew Carlson's U of M record in the event (13:44.64) and makes him the first Golden Gopher all-American at 5000m since 1977 when Steve Plasencia, now Mead’s coach, ran to such honors.
“Hassan ran a fantastic race,” Plasencia said. “He is going to be awfully good if he can stay healthy throughout his career.
In Other Gopher Action ... Liz Roehrig finds herself in second place after Day 1 of the heptathlon. Reigning NCAA indoor pentathlon champ Jacquelyn Johnson of Arizona State leads the competition with 3606 points; Roehrig has 3581.
Roehrig ran a season-best 14.32 in the 100m hurdles, high jumped 5-10, put the shot a near-PR 44-6, and clocked a 24.54 200m to cap off the day.
“Liz had a great first day and put herself in a super position for tomorrow,” Gopher head coach Matt Bingle said. “I’m excited to see what the second day brings.”
Gopher Andrea Smith capped her collegiate career with a 9th place finish in the pole vault yesterday. She cleared 13-1 1/2.
Gopher steeplechaser Jamie Cheever finished 11th in 10:15.31.
Action Concludes Today ... In the final day of competition today, Roehrig will conclude competition in the heptathlon, Gopher teammates Heather Dorniden and Ruby Radocaj will compete in the 800m and javelin finals, respectively.
Stanford's Garrett Heath of Winona will run in the 1500m final and Missouri thrower Nate Englin, a Mounds View alum, will throw in the shot put final.
Live results from the NCAA Championships are found HERE.
Photo by Gene Niemi.