Able and Najda Pace VMI Distance Runners at VCU

RICHMOND, Va. – Performances by freshmen distance runners Kurt Able (Wesley Chapel, Fla./Wesley Chapel) and Ania Najda (Olsztyn, Poland/Univ. of Warmia and Mazury) highlighted the competitions turned in by the VMI men's and women's outdoor track and field teams at the Virginia Commonwealth University Ram Invitational on Friday. The competition opened the 2005 outdoor season for the Keydets

Able won the 10,000-meter run in a lifetime best mark of 32:19.00, fifth all-time in VMI history. Meanwhile, Najda won her section of the 1,500-meter run with a time of 4:47.63 which placed her eighth overall when combined with the other sections of the women's 1,500-meters. Najda's time was also a school record, eclipsing the mark of 4:51.01 set by Rachel Love in 1998.

VMI had several other runners compete at the event including sophomore Graham Forbes (Richmond, Va./Collegiate) who placed third overall in the 10,000-meters with a lifetime best of 32:39.80 to register the ninth best mark in VMI history. Junior Shawn Hogan (Salem, N.H./Salem) placed eighth in the 10,000-meters at 32:58.83 while sophomore Casey Grey (Monroe, Va./Amherst Co.) finished ninth at 34:09.39. Hogan's and Grey's times were each lifetime personal bests.

Freshman Donnie Mikels (Rustburg, Va./Rustburg) and sophomore Edwin Lugo (Orlando, Fla./Timber Creek) placed sixth and 10th respectively in the men's 3,000-meter steeplechase. Mikels ran a 9:36.57 clocking while Edwin recorded a time of 9:52.69.

In the men\'s 1,500m run freshmen Matt Bierlein (Orlean, Va./Fauquier) place 27th overall in 4:08.42 and freshmen Ben Switzer (Lexington, Va./Rockbridge Co.) placed 29th overall in 4:09.44

In the women\'s 5,000-meter run, sophomore Kathleen Resetar (Fairfax Station, Va./Bishop Ireton) placed 20th overall in a time of 19:33.15, a lifetime best.

The Keydets will next compete at UNC-Wilmington on Friday and Saturday March 25-26.