Nov. 17, 2016
The Vanderbilt cross country and track & field programs signed four athletes during the NCAA’s fall signing period this week. The Commodores will welcome Sophia Falco (Lakewood Ranch, Fla.; Jumps and Sprints), Gillian Mortimer (Southlake, Texas; XC/Distance T&F), Emily Cohen (Toronto, ON; XC/Mid-distance T&F), and Regan Clay (Rossford, Ohio; Sprints) to campus next year for the 2017-18 season.
Steve Keith, head coach and director for Vanderbilt’s cross country and track & field programs, is encouraged that the four newcomers will be a great fit at Vanderbilt. “Our coaches have worked extremely hard at finding the most talented student-athletes that will fit with Vanderbilt and our program, and as a staff, we couldn’t be happier with this early signing group.” Keith also noted the impact he hopes this group can make during their four years in Nashville. “We really focused on finding top-level talent in this class, while also addressing some of our stronger event areas within the program, so we can make a splash at the SEC and NCAA levels.”
Last season, Vanderbilt finished 10th during the indoor season in the final USTFCCCA NCAA South Regional rankings and 11th for the outdoor season in the same poll. The 2016-17 season kicks off for the Commodore track and field team on Dec. 3 at the Vanderbilt Multipurpose Facility for the Vanderbilt Indoor Opener meet, the first of five indoor meets that will be hosted at Vanderbilt University this season.
Learn more about the Vanderbilt XC/T&F signees below:
Assistant coach Rebekah Smeltzer on Emily Cohen:
“Emily is an amazing young woman. She is an intense competitor who has already had the opportunity to represent her country on the world stage at the IAAF World Youth Championship in Cali, Colombia. She is capable of making an immediate impact not only on our team, but within the SEC.”
Assistant coach Donnie Young on Regan Clay:
“I’m thrilled to have Regan join our 400m group.She is a two-time OHSAA State Champion and is currently ranked 20th in the class of 2017. I’ve watched her develop over the last few years into a nice quarter miler and her best years are in front of her. She will be a tremendous addition to our 4×400 and I can’t wait to work with her.”
Associate head coach Clark Humphreys on Sophia Falco:
“Sophia is going to be a real triple threat in college. She is a very accomplished jumper and sprinter, with a lot of experience at national caliber competitions. I’m very excited to work with her next year and see her develop in the SEC and on the national level.”
Assistant coach Rebekah Smeltzer on Gillian Mortimer:
“Gillian comes from one of the top high school distance prgrams in the country. By already competing in multiple Nike Cross National meets, she is no stranger to the national scene, and her leadership skills and racing experience at that level will serve her well as she makes the transition. I am really excited to work with such a talented and mindful athlete.”