Reid Wins Second Consecutive National Championship in Cross Country

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Sheila Reid won her second consecutive NCAA Cross Country Championship. (AP Photo)

VILLANOVA, Pa. - An incredible sprint down the final straightaway and a riveting scene at the finish line culminated with senior Sheila Reid winning the individual national title at the NCAA Women's Cross Country Championships on Monday afternoon. Reid won the title for the second straight year and led Villanova to a spot on the podium for the third straight season. She and senior Bogdana Mimic each earned All-America honors as the Wildcats placed third in the team standings.

The leading group of runners was remarkably tight with 500 meters left in the race and both Reid and down the stretch both Reid and Jordan Hasay of Oregon sprinted towards the finish line side by side. Reid surged into the lead for good in the final 100 meters and crossed the finish line six-tenths of a second ahead of Hasay and the rest of the field. Her winning time was 19:41.2.

"It is very satisfying to win my last collegiate cross country race," Reid said. "I still have an outdoor season but coming in here as the defending champion I really wanted to finish cross country on a strong note and win the individual title again. It may sound trite but I love to win and after college the opportunities to race in cross country are limited."

The top three teams were separated by a mere 19 points. Georgetown won its first-ever team title with 162 points, followed by Washington (170) in second place and Villanova (181) in third. Head coach Gina Procaccio has now led the Wildcats to a spot on the awards podium for three seasons running, including winning the 2009 and 2010 national titles.

"We are always happy to have a spot on the podium," Procaccio said. "That is what we are trying to do, is be a team that can get on the podium year after year. Each one of our runners worked very hard today and they did a great job."

Reid and Mimic are each three-time All-Americans in cross country with their finishes today. Mimic placed sixth overall (19:46) and was followed by sophomores Emily Lipari and Nicky Akande in 55th and 60th places, respectively. Junior Summer Cook was 129th to round out the group of Villanova scorers.