Teschuk 5th in Mile, 7th in 3,000m at NCAA Indoor Championships
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – In simple terms, it was the greatest individual performance in a single day in North Dakota State indoor track & field history.
Bison junior Erin Teschuk (Winnipeg, Manitoba) earned a fifth-place finish in the mile and took seventh place in the 3,000m at the NCAA Indoor Championships on Saturday evening.
Teschuk ran the mile first, finishing in a school-record time of 4:32.35 that trimmed another 1.90 seconds off her previous best – clocked on Friday evening in the NCAA semifinals.
Overall, it was the fastest mile race in NCAA women’s history. Five women finished in under 4:33, while previously no more than two women had run that fast in the same NCAA final. Michigan State’s Leah O’Connor won in 4:27.18, which was a new meet record and No. 2 in collegiate history.
Teschuk’s mile time on Saturday would have won the national title in 8 of the last 10 seasons. Her 4:32.35 stands as the 12th-fastest in NCAA Indoor Championships history.
“I was hoping to place higher, but I gave it everything I had,” said Teschuk. “It’s exciting to hear that it ranks as one of the top times ever, so I’m very happy with that.”
Exactly two hours after her outstanding performance in the mile, Teschuk came back to claim seventh in the 3,000m in a time of 9:07.92. Her performance was the second-fastest in NDSU history behind only her school-record 9:02.40 earlier this season.
The mile-3,000m double was a tough challenge, but Teschuk had no regrets about tackling both events.
“I was a little nervous to have both races on the same night,” she related. “I definitely thought I had a chance of being top-eight in both, so I did what I wanted to do. The 3K worked out better than I expected, and I really felt good in both races. I’m glad I did (both).”
Teschuk’s fifth-place mile finish is the second-highest in NCAA Indoor Championships history by a Bison, behind only Leslie Brost’s fourth-place finish in the pole vault in 2012.
Teschuk earned first-team All-America honors in both events – the sixth and seventh All-America distinctions in NDSU’s Division I era indoors, with Brost and Laura Hermanson (7th in 800m in 2009) as the only other first-teamers.
Teschuk now owns the five fastest mile times in North Dakota State history. She improved the school record in the event on four different occasions this season, including on back-to-back days at the NCAA meet.
“The great thing about Erin is she loves the competition,” said NDSU distance coach Andrew Carlson. “To run against those girls with what they did tonight, that helped Erin take it to a new level that she hadn’t been to before. Running personal bests and school records in the mile in back-to-back days is incredible.”
Teschuk is now ranked 18th in the world this year in the mile.
Both Teschuk and NDSU head women’s coach Stevie Keller were quick to praise Carlson on his leadership of the Bison distance runners in his first full season.
“Honestly, words can’t even describe how thankful I am for Andrew and how much he has meant to me this season,” Teschuk stated. “He’s an amazing coach – not just for me but for everyone on our team. He does such a great job preparing us and motivating us.”
“Erin has made unbelievable strides so far this year,” said Keller. “It’s a credit to Andrew on his hard work and to her for her commitment to training hard.”
Following the meet, Teschuk wasn’t ready to reflect on her whirlwind, breakthrough season.
“It’s been a lot to take in really – definitely a little overwhelming at times,” Teschuk said.
Carlson was better able to see the big picture.
“Erin’s true colors have come out this indoor season,” he said. “We look forward to what the future holds because she has all the talent in the world. She works hard, and she is really, really, really tough. With that combination, the sky is the limit. This is just the beginning.”
Teschuk was proud to represent North Dakota State on the biggest stage.
“It’s awesome. It fuels me to want to do more,” she said. “I want to get back on the track right now. It’s great to see that NDSU can run with all these schools.”
Courtesy: NDSU Athletics