May 26, 2012
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — The Vanderbilt track and field team wrapped-up its 2012 campaign at the NCAA East Preliminary Round, with Kristen Findley competing in the 1,500 meters and Kristen Smith in the 5,000 meters.
Findley, who garnered attention this year after setting a school record in the 1,500 at the Vanderbilt Invitational and placing fourth in the event at the deep SEC Championships, just missed a trip to the NCAA Championships by .16 seconds.
Findley clocked a time of 4:20.65 to place 13th, just behind Virginia’s Morgane Gay. Gay clocked a time of 4:20.49 to finish 12th and advance to Des Moines for next week’s championships.
“It was an excellent race, but Kristen came up just a little bit short,” Vanderbilt Head Coach Steve Keith said. “She really put her best effort out there today and she should be very proud.”
Despite the result, Keith was especially proud of the season his junior put together.
“What a season!” Keith said. “She’s made such a jump to a national level, these experiences will go a long way as she enters her senior season.”
In the 5,000 meters, Smith clocked a time of 17:05.69 to finish 39th.
As with Findley, Keith is proud of the season she put together.
“It wasn’t her best time but she really competed well,” Keith said. “It was the end of a very full and productive year for both her and our team.”