Nov. 15, 2012
TEMPE – Arizona State University sophomore Shelby Houlihan will compete as an individual competitor this Saturday, Nov. 17 at the NCAA Cross Country Championships in Louisville, Ky.
Houlihan will be the lone Sun Devil represented at the championship competition, earning an individual bid after posting a fourth-place finish at the NCAA West Regional Championships last Friday.
Houlihan's finish matched the seventh-best finish in ASU history at the Regional meet and is the best finish since Amy Hastings took second in 2005. While not all cross country courses are built the same, Houlihan clocked a time of 19:50 at the Jefferson Park Golf Course in the fastest time run by a Sun Devil over a 6,000-meter race, beating her own record of 19:58 set earlier this season - a school record previously held by the Olympian Hastings.
In just her second year, Houlihan has been the staple of the cross country program and has been the team’s top finisher at every race in her tenure. Last season, Houlihan was named the Pac-12 Cross Country and Track and Field Newcomer of the Year – becoming the first-ever student-athlete in conference history to sweep the honor.
Houlihan will be trying to earn her first All-American honor of any event and will need to post a top-40 finish to accomplish that. The best finish any Sun Devil has had at the NCAA Championships was a fifth-place run by Lisa Aguilera in 2000. Since 1998, nine Sun Devils have earned All-America accolades.
The women’s 6,000-meter race is set to get underway at the E.P. Tom Sawyer State Park at Noon ET.