Nelson Leads Mocs to Third Place Finish at Opening Meet

Nelson Leads Mocs to Third Place Finish at Opening Meet

LAKELAND, FL - Sophomore Hannah Nelson turned in a time of 11:29.05 to finish in 16th place in the women's 3K at the Holloway Park Preseason Festival held here Saturday at the Holloway Park and Nature Preserve. Florida Southern finished in third place in the NCAA Division II portion of the 11-team field.

Allison Wright, the 2016 Sunshine State Conference Freshman of the Year, took 18th place at 11:34.07 while junior Aleksa Guerra was 22nd at 11:40.06.

Freshman Mercedes Mendoza was the next Moccasin across the finish line at 11:42.58 to finish 24th while Hannah Flemming was 26th at 11:50.80 and junior Jolene Vergauwen came in at 12:00.31 to take 32nd place.

Other Moccasin runners included sophomore Anna Brook Opalinski (39th, 12:05.68), freshman Amber Winton (49th, 12:20.75), junior Amanda Slattery (52nd, 12:27.37), and freshman Madison Santore (65th, 12:59.43).

A total of 116 individuals ran in the early morning race. There were 11 teams entered, five Division II schools and five in the NAIA/Small School category. The University of South Florida was the lone NCAA Division I program in the competition.

Saint Leo took Division II honors with a team score of 27 points, 10 more than second place Embry-Riddle, which is in its first season as a full member of the Sunshine State Conference. The Moccasins took third with 75 points, followed by Lynn (89), and Rollins (155).

In the NAIA/Small School class, Southeastern, which co-hosted the event with Florida Southern, won the team title with 15 points, followed by Pasco-Hernando State College (67), Webber (78), South Florida State (99) and Warner (128).

Florida Southern will have two weeks off from competition to prepare for the Trevecca D2 Showcase on Sept. 23 in Nashville, TN.

The Moccasins will return to Holloway Park on Sept. 29 for the flrunners Invitational. Florida Southern College will also be the host school when the NCAA South Regional Meet comes to Holloway Park on Nov. 4.