Women’s Mile Heats: Leah O’Connor And Cory McGee Win Their Heats As There Is Still No Clear Favorite

No big surprises after round 1. The race was wide open coming in, but anyone who could have been considered a contender made it through.  Leah O’Connor won the first heat and Florida’s 2013 World Championships runner Cory McGee took the second.

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by LetsRun.com
March 14, 2014

Albuquerque, NM – No big surprises came from the first round of the women’s mile at the 2014 NCAA Indoor Track and Field Championships. The race was wide open coming in, but anyone who could have been considered a contender made it through.  Leah O’Connor won the first heat and Florida’s 2013 World Championships runner Cory McGee took the second.

Place Name Affiliation Time
1 Leah O’Connor MIST 4:43.06 Q
2 Elizabeth Whelan UNC 4:43.11 Q
3 Emily Lipari NOVA 4:43.27 Q
4 Shelby Houlihan AZST 4:43.45 Q
5 Stephanie Schappert NOVA 4:45.94
6 Linden Hall FSU 4:48.65
7 Elinor Purrier UNH 4:48.82
8 Annie LeHardy UNC 5:02.12

*Full Splits

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Heat 1:

Arizona State’s Shelby Houlihan led this one for almost the entire race at an even pace (through 809m in 2:22.39) and 7 out of 8 runners in the field were still right together with 200m to go. In the last lap Leah O’Connor got to the line first in 4:43.06 as Elizabeth Whelan, Emily Lipari and Houlihan took the other three auto spots.

Quick Thought #1: We thought it was interesting that in her interview Houlihan said she’s been driving from Phoenix, AZ up to do some runs at altitude in Sedona (4500ft elevation) and Flagstaff (7000ft) to prepare for NCAAs in Albuquerque. Employee 1.1 often does the exact opposite as he lives in Flagstaff and drives to Phoenix to do the faster workouts that can’t be done at 7000ft.

QT #2: Even though she didn’t win the heat, Lipari had the fastest last lap at 31.96-seconds as she was the only one to dip under 32.


Leah O’Connor

Emily Lipari

Shelby Houlihan

Heat 2:

Place Name Affiliation Time
1 Cory McGee UFL 4:41.23 Q
2 Stephanie Brown ARK 4:41.56 Q
3 Allison Peare UKY 4:42.40 Q
4 Colleen Quigley FSU 4:42.51 Q
5 Monica Adler BOSU 4:42.56 q
6 Carly Hamilton UGA 4:42.87 q
7 Olivia Burne STON 4:46.94
8 Rebekah Greene UFL 4:48.30

*Full Splits

Georgia’s Carly Hamilton did the early leading in heat 2 as she set a pace about the same as heat 1 going through 809m in 2:21.79. This heat would pick it up earlier than the first however, as with 600m to go Cory McGee took over and started running 34-second 200-pace, eventually winning the heat in 4:41.23. Stephanie Brown, Allison Peare and Colleen Quigley would take the other auto spots as Monica Adler and Hamilton both made the final on time.

Quick Thought #1: In our preview we talked about how McGee hasn’t had a lot of success in past NCAA Indoor Champs, but she looked pretty good today. She won this heat and then ran a good leg on Florida’s DMR. Assuming she isn’t too worn out from the two races, she could definitely be a contender in Saturday’s final.

QT #2: Quigley is someone we chose as a possible champion depending on how many of the other runners doubled up in the DMR. Here she looked like she was in trouble and might not qualify as she looked like she was fading with 300 to go. However, she picked it up to stay in the top 4 and when we asked her about it she said she was just trying to conserve energy by not pushing the pace with the leaders, but picked it up when she realized there were girls moving on her.

It’s worth noting that FSU coach Karen Harvey didn’t run Quigley on the DMR later in the evening so Quigely should be fresher than the like of McGee, Lipari, etc.


Stephanie Brown

Colleen Quigley