IU Prepares For Pre-NCAA's (10/14/04)
INDIANA HEADS TO PRE NCAA'S
The Indiana women's cross country team will next travel to Terre Haute, Ind. to compete at the Pre-NCAA's on Saturday, Oct. 16. The event, which features some of the top teams in the nation, serves as a prelude to the NCAA Championship, which will be held on Nov. 22, on the same course. In all, there will be nine Big Ten teams who will compete in the 31-team field. Joining Indiana will be Illinois (RV), Iowa, No. 3 Michigan, No. 17 Michigan State, Minnesota, Northwestern, Ohio State and Purdue. Competing for the Hoosiers in the 6,000m Blue Race beginning at 11 a.m. will be Christina Barniak, Ashley Groth, Jessica Gall, Lindsay Hattendorf, Allison Miller, Larra Overton, Mindy Peterson, Nikki Peterson, Maura Ratcliff, Julie Shields, Kelly Siefker and Kristin Whitezell.
QUOTING COACH WILSON
About the Pre NCAA's
"This is an important meet in terms of how tough the competition will be and how we can run as a team. What we need is for our runners to step up and run at their fitness level. If they do that, then I think we can finish at least in the top-10, if not better."
Concerning the race strategy
"I'm looking for the girls to go out and get right into the race. We need to be competitive early and out race people. That is what this competition is all about."
LAST YEAR AT PRE-NCAA'S
The Indiana women's team continued to battle injuries and finished 22nd in the 6000m meet in 2003 at Byrnes Park/Irv Warren Memorial Golf Course in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. Audrey Giesler and Kelly Siefker were the Hoosiers' first and third-place finishers, respectively. Mindy Peterson was second for the team and 93rd overall (22:01), followed by Siefker. Julie Shields (22:57), Kristin Whitezell (23:02) and Allison Miller (23:03) rounded out the Hoosier lineup. Heidi Crowley turned in a personal-best in the women's open 6000m race, taking 37th in 22:48.9.
LAST TIME OUT
The Indiana women's cross country team had an eighth-place showing at the Great American Cross Country Festival on Oct. 1. The event, which was held in Cary, N.C., featured 20 schools, including six ranked teams. Junior Kelly Siefker led the Hoosiers with a career-best time of 17:43.54 - besting her previous mark of 17:56 set earlier this year at the Indiana Intercollegiate - to lead the squad with a 15th-place finish. Sophomore Jessica Gall, who was named the Big Ten Athlete of the Week for the week of Sept. 25 following her first-place finish at the Indiana Intercollegiate, was the second IU runner to cross the finish line, finishing 27th with a time of 18:06.16. IU senior Mindy Peterson ran a time of 18:41.01 to place 56th overall. Following Peterson was sophomore Kristin Whitezell who placed 65th with a time of 18:53.60. Sophomore Lindsay Hattendorf placed 77th with a run of 19:07.0, closely followed by junior Larra Overton who clocked a 19:10.73 - besting her season-best time by 45 seconds - to place 79th overall. Other IU runners include freshman Nikki Peterson who ran a 19:42.21 to finish in 108th, while junior Allison Miller (20:26.13) and senior Julie Shields (20:42.81) finished in 131st and 138th, respectively.
Jessica Gall NAMED BIG TEN ATHLETE OF THE WEEK...AGAIN
For the second time this season, IU sophomore Jessica Gall was named as the Big Ten Athlete of the Week following her performance at the Indiana Intercollegiates. Gall outran Ball State's Jill Scully to the finish line to win the Indiana Intercollegiate title in 17:40. Gall joined Michigan State freshman Danette Doetzel, as the co-Big Ten Women's Cross Country Athlete of the Week. Gall's previous conference nod came on the week of Sept. 7 after being the top IU finisher at the Indiana Open with a time of 18:32 in the 5K event.
HOOSIERS ON THE WEB
For the latest information on Indiana cross country, please refer to the official IU athletics' website, iuhoosiers.com.
Judy Wilson is in her seventh season as the women's distance coach and head women's cross country coach at her alma mater. As a student-athlete in the mid-1980s, she played a key role in the Hoosiers' regional and national success in cross country, and she is enjoying the same results as head coach.
In the past five seasons, Indiana has had six All-Big Ten athletes. IU also continues to hold high academic standards as 32 Hoosiers earned Academic All-Big Ten honors the last three seasons.
A former walk-on at Indiana (1984-1988), Wilson transformed into one of the most improved and strongest athletes on the team. She was named team captain in 1987-88 and won the Most Improved Athlete Award and the Coaches Award in 1986 and 1988 and the Scholastic Achievement Award in 1987.
She ran with the likes of Colette Goudreau, Kim Betz, and Michelle Dekkers during her time as a Hoosier and still owns one of the fastest Hoosier times on the IU course (4th) and ranks in the top five in Indiana history in the 3,000, 5,000, and 10,000 meters.
Upon completing eligibility, Wilson became the head coach for the girls cross country and track and field teams and boys distance track at Bloomington South High School for two years. She obtained 1989 Regional Coach of the Year honors after leading the cross country team to its first state qualification in the school's history and coaching a 400m state champion. In 1990, she coached state qualifiers in the 800m and 4x400m relay.
During this time, Wilson also received a B.S. in Exercise Science/Physical Education from IU and has earned Level 1 and Level 2 USAT&F Coaching Education Certification.
She continued to compete, running for Nike Indiana. She was fourth in the 5,000m in the 1988 Olympic Trials and second in the 10K at TAC Nationals that same year. Her Olympic Trials performance capped off the amazing development of her career. She began as a 5:26 miler and became a national-caliber distance runner.
In 1989, Wilson was second in the 3,000m at TAC Nationals (9:18), won the Indianapolis 500 Half-Marathon (1:17.59) and set the record time in winning the half-marathon event at the Olympic Festival in Oklahoma City (1:16.43). The following year, she captured 10th place at the 1990 U.S. Cross Country Trials.
Wilson is a native of Oldenburg, Ind., and graduate of Batesville H.S. She and her husband, Mark, reside in Bloomington with their infant son, Hunter.
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