Here's a nice analysis below from Kevin Liao at www.spikeduppsychedup.com -- trying to put the Paul Short race into perspective. As followers of the Villanova women's team know, a lot hinges on the team's 4 and 5. Villanova jumped back atop the national polls after the Paul Short Run because (a) Bogdana Mimic has seemingly taken a step up as a major individual national contender, and (b) Nicky Akande and Callie Hogan in 4 and 5 have closed the gap separating them from Emily Lipari in 3. At Paul Short, Akande's finish was just as big a warning to the rest of the top teams as was Mimic's defeat of Providence's Emily Sisson. Click the title of this post to go directly to the spikeduppsychedup website -- plenty of good stuff there.
A Closer Look At NCAA Contenders Villanova, Georgetown, Providence
Adjusted scores from Paul Short show different stories for Big East rivals
The Paul Short Run on October 7 provided a sense of how the competition for NCAA women’s cross country might play out at nationals, but with the absence of top runners for Villanova and Georgetown, fans were left seeking more definitive answers.
Below were the team scores for Providence, Villanova and Georgetown – three Big East teams many think will contend for the national title in November.
Providence 101 Villanova 104 Georgetown 141
Sission 3 Mimic 1 Jones 8
Nagel 6 Lipari 11 Richardson 18
Davidson 9 Akande 14 Maag 19
Greany 12 Hogan 31 Kasper 21
Thek 71 Chapman 47 Borduin 75
But what if Shelia Reid of Villanova and Georgetown’s Emily Infeld, the defending NCAA champ and runner-up, were in the race? By adding Reid and Infeld to their respective line-ups and assuming they would place one-two in the race, the race produces a very different storyline.
Villanova 66 Georgetown 76 Providence 111
Reid 1 Infeld 2 Sission 5
Mimic 3 Jones 10 Nagel 8
Lipari 13 Richardson 20 Davidson 11
Akande 16 Maag 21 Greany 14
Hogan 33 Kasper 23 Thek 73
Georgetown benefits the most in this simulation from having Infeld replace its fifth runner that finished well back in 75th place, but could not gain enough to overtake two-time defending champs Villanova. While Georgetown would have gotten in its fifth runner first, the Wildcats benefit from having four in the top 16 and two major frontrunners in Reid and Bogdana Mimic.
Providence’s top four is tremendous and each have All-American potential but the team suffers greatly from its lack of depth in the fifth spot. The weakness was able to withstand Reid- and Infeld-less Villanova and Georgetown squads at Paul Short, but the Friars will struggle come the Big East and national meets with a fifth runner scoring so many points.