FINN VALLEY AC’s Sarah Collins helped Providence College to fourth position in the NCAA Cross Country Championships yesterday.
Collins is just back from a lengthy injury lay-off, but has returned in style.
She recently won individual and team gold with Providence at the Big East Cross Country in Mason, Ohio, going on to finish second in the North East Region Cross Country.
Yesterday, Collins was the lead Providence athlete to finish, coming home in 20th to take All American honours at Tom Sawyer State Park in Louisville, Kentucky.
In the first half of the race, Collins sat at the head of the lead pack, but dropped to the rear by the 4km mark, still holding her place inside the top 25.
Collins came home in a time of 20:26.8 to take 20th position overall and claim her third all-American honour.
“We are very happy to be on the podium for the third time in four years,” said head coach Ray Treacy.
“The women were excellent today. They fought hard and came right through the field to get on the podium. I’m really happy for Sarah and Cat (Rocha, who was 39th) to make All-American again.”
Collins is rated by Finn Valley AC’s Patsy McGonagle – the manager of the Irish athletics team as the ‘best young prospect I’ve seen in forty years’, having broken Sonia O’Sullivan’s Irish junior record over 5,000m.