March 7, 2016

NOTRE DAME, Ind. – The University of Notre Dame track and field program is busy making preparations for the NCAA Indoor Track and Field Championship this upcoming weekend. However, they received word over this past weekend that senior superstar Molly Seidel was named the U.S. Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) Great Lakes Regional women’s indoor track athlete of the year.

“Molly has continued on her incredible ascent since winning the NCAA outdoor 10,000-meter title in 2015,” track and field head coach Alan Turner states. “She is in the best shape of her life, she is confident, and very poised. We are so proud of her accomplishments, and they are all well deserved. Molly works her tail off in workouts, and does all the right things off the track as well. She has a great shot at being the national women’s track athlete of the year.”

“Previously, Molly has had great seasons, but what has made this year unique for her is how consistently strong she has been,” cross country head coach Matt Sparks says. “She has been able to handle training adjustments and heavier workloads, and has not waivered.”

Seidel, a senior from Hartland, Wis., is undefeated in both the 3,000 and 5,000 meters this season heading into the NCAA Championship – in which she also qualified as a member of the women’s distance medley relay team. Seidel ran 15:19.64 to win the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) women’s 5,000-meter title, which gave her the collegiate lead and the No. 4 spot on the all-time college performers list. She also claimed the 3,000-meters crown at the ACC title meet, and ranks No. 2 in that event at 8:57.13.

This is the second regional award Seidel has won from the USTFCCCA during the 2015-16 school year, after being honored as the great lakes regional women’s cross country athlete of the year in November. Seidel won the ACC Women’s Cross Country Championship with a solid, 14-second win over the second-place finisher. In each of her four races during the cross country regular season, she finished third or better – including finishing second at the Wisconsin Adidas Invitational where she broke the course record. She also raced to victory at the NCAA Women’s Cross Country Championship, winning by five seconds over the rest of the field, and went on to be honored as the USTFCCCA Women’s National Athlete of the Year.

Seidel travels to Birmingham, Ala. this weekend for the NCAA Indoor Championships, and is joined by Anna Rohrer (3,000m and 5,000m), Margaret Bamgbose (400m), Kaila Barber (60m hurdles) and Nate Richartz (pole vault) as individual entrants. Seidel also qualified with the women’s distance medley relay team alongside Jessica Harris, Parker English, Jamie Marvil, and Danielle Aragon.

— ND —

Lizzie Mikes serves as Media Services Coordinator at the University of Notre Dame. A 2013 graduate of Johnson & Wales University, she oversees credential management and is the athletic communications director for Fighting Irish men’s and women’s swimming and diving and track and field. She has assisted with numerous NCAA postseason events hosted by Notre Dame, and is heavily involved in the day-to-day tasks of the athletic communications office.