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Franklin Runs an Incredible 5th in the Men's 10k at the NCAA Championships

Courtesy: Princeton Athletic Communications                                                                      Release: 06/07/2013
Courtesy: Princeton Athletic Communications
Senior Michael Franklin stuns with a fifth-place finish in the men's 10k.
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EUGENE, Ore. (6/6/13) – Senior Michael Franklin ran the race of his life, finishing fifth in the country in the men’s 10k at the 2013 NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Championships on Thursday, June 6.

Franklin clocked a 29:42.34 to record Princeton’s best finish at the NCAAs in the 10k. Other NCAA competitors include Brian Leung (2012) 16th at 29:58.45, Frank Macreery (2006) 10th at 29:21.70 and Joe LeMay (1989) 8th at 30:05.19.

Arizona’s Lawi Lalang won the race at 29:29.65, followed by Paul Katam (UNCG) at 29:41.27, Craig Lutz (Texas) 29:41.97, Michael Fout (FSU) 29:42.23 and then Franklin.

This year's Ivy League champion in the 5 and 10k, Franklin entered the meet seeded 18th out of 24. He finished in front of top-seeded Girma Mecheso  (OSU) as well as Parker Stinson (Oregon) who had the third-best time in the nation entering today’s race.

Franklin was in second place for the first couple laps before he settled comfortably into a big pack. With about nine laps remaining the race starting to slow a bit and athletes started to break away from one another. Franklin found himself steady in the top 12 and with three laps to go he turned it on. He ran his fastest three laps in the final three laps clocking a 1:08.17, 1:06.73 and closed with a 1:01.62 - the second -fastest lap of any of the competitors throughout the entire race.

Junior Chris Bendtsen started out in the pack and but about 5200m into the race he started to drop back. He finished 22nd overall at 31:06.83. In an odd twist, as he was crossing the line he started to slow up when an official told him he had one more lap. Bendtsen kept going while his finish time was posted on the board, unbeknownst to him.

It was a crushing end to senior Greta Feldman’s Princeton career as she was the first one out in advancing to the finals in the women’s 1500. Feldman, who finished fifth last year with a PR in the semifinals, was sixth in her heat and 13th overall at 4:18.25. She was in the top pack after the first 300 meters and took the lead after 700 meters with the second-fastest split at 1:08.56. Feldman continued to stay out front with a 1:07.43 on her third lap. She looked to be a lock around the Bowerman curve but Villanova’s Emily Lipari pushed to the outside and made a move, and then got nudged on the inside by Notre Dame’s Rebecca Tracy and Oregon’s Becca Friday.

Feldman does earn second-team All-America honors, her second career All-America award.

The men’s 4x400 relay of senior Russell Dinkins, senior Austin Hollimon, junior Tom Hopkins and sophomore Daniel McCord finished seventh in their heat and 22nd overall at 3:09.84. Hopkins led off with a 47.5 and handed off to McCord who ran a 48.7. Dinkins ran the fastest leg clocking a 46.3 before handing off to Hollimon who closed with a 47.2. Injuries and illness plagued the Ivy League champion relay the last couple of weeks and set them off pace. Dinkins, Hollimon and Hopkins placed 12th this event in 2011 with a 3:06.94. They entered the race with a season-best 3:06.26 from the Penn Relays.

Princeton has one final competitor, junior Imani Oliver in the women’s triple jump tomorrow at 3:25 p.m.

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