USATF Women’s 5000 — A 1–2 For The Iowans

Shelby Houlihan & Karissa Schweizer thrilled the locals with their finish at the front. (ANDREW McCLANAHAN/PHOTO RUN)

IN MANY WAYS this was a very Bowerman TC affair. While a hoped-for team-position sweep for the Portland-based Nike training group did not eventuate, Jerry Schumacher’s crew dictated how the race would be run—and won.

The early laps were pedestrian enough as the rain started to fall. The Boston AA’s Erika Kemp led for a couple with Under Armour’s Rachel Schneider in tow before Danielle Shanahan of HOKA Northern Arizona Elite passed the first kilo mark in a modest 3:15.09. The tightly-bunched pack featured plenty of Bowerman red in the front as Karissa Schweizer took over the lead shortly thereafter, with teammate Marielle Hall on her shoulder. The 1600 passed in 5:04.8. Hall took over on the next lap and hit 2K in 6:18.4, a 3:03.4 tempo that started to stretch the pack out a bit. Bowerman’s Shelby Houlihan, just 27 hours after her 1500 win, sat comfortably in the pack, bouncing anywhere from 8th to 10th place.

With 6 laps to go, Houlihan moved up to 3rd, and the first 5 athletes all wore the same red colors. Elise Cranny took over and led through 3K in 9:24.82, a 3:06.4 clip for the pack. Staying close was New Balance’s Elinor Purrier, the New Hampshire alum who had run a 4:02.34 at the Rome DL, and HOKA’s Stephanie Bruce. After the 3200 (10:02.4), Bruce interrupted the color scheme and took the front. That sped up the pace and left 11 contenders in the lead pack. Houlihan responded, the defending champion taking over just 300 later with Schweizer following closely. Schneider and Hall stayed in proximity.

The rain, coming down hard now, was only a foreshadowing for the storm that was coming. Houlihan led through 4K in 12:28.1 (a 3:03.3 kilo). A half lap later, Schweizer surged back to the lead to run the penultimate lap in 68.36, a decisive move that left just 5 in contention. At the bell, Schneider ran 2nd, Houlihan 3rd and Purrier 4th. Hall, a stride back, was just starting to lose contact. Schneider made her big move on the backstretch, Houlihan covering it. Off the final turn, Houlihan launched a blistering sprint, victory undeniable as she streaked home in 15:15.50, a final lap of 63.57 (final K 2:47.4), last 200 in 30.6.

Schweizer surged past Schneider and Purrier followed, Schweizer and Purrier grabbing team spots in 15:17.03 and 15:17.46. Schneider finished 4th in 15:17.91. It was a 1-2 not just for Nike Bowerman but also for Iowa prep fans, as both Houlihan and Schweizer were regulars on the Blue Oval in high school.

Said Houlihan after repeating as a double national champion, “I wanted to take it with a mile to go, try to make it an honest race and help out my teammates, try to get as many on the team as well.” With the 1500/5000 double impossible in Doha (the finals are 30 minutes apart), Schneider may well end up on the team, as Houlihan said, “I like the 1500 a lot more. I’m more confident in that race, so that’s kind of what I’m leaning toward.”


USATF WOMEN’S 5000 RESULTS

(July 28)

1. Shelby Houlihan (BowTC) 15:15.50

(pace—37.54, 79.47 [1:57.01], 77.40 [3:14.41], 74.45 [4:28.86], 74.08 [5:42.94], 73.33 [6:56.27], 73.52 [8:09.79], 75.10 [9:24.89], 74.39 [10:39.28], 72.80 [11:52.08], 71.40 [13:03.48], 68.46 [14:11.94], 63.56)

(finish—15.9, 30.6, 63.56, 2:12.02, 3:23.42, 4:36.22);

2. Karissa Schweizer (BowTC) 15:17.03

(17.3, 32.0, 65.33, 2:13.69, 3:24.82, 4:37.60);

3. Elinor Purrier (NBal) 15:17.46

(17.6, 32.4, 65.41, 2:13.60, 3:24.91, 4:37.55);

4. Rachel Schneider (UArm) 15:17.91

(18.5, 33.2, 66.17, 2:14.33, 3:25.54, 4:38.34);

5. Marielle Hall (BowTC) 15:20.69

(68.36, 2:17.02, 3:28.35, 4:41.00);

6. Shannon Rowbury (Nik) 15:25.40

(69.07, 2:21.07, 3:32.63, 4:45.10);

7. Elise Cranny (BowTC) 15:25.66 PR

(69.09, 2:21.15, 3:32.72, 4:46.25);

8. Vanessa Fraser (Nik) 15:31.25

(74.19, 2:27.14, 3:38.19, 4:51.15);

9. Stephanie Bruce (HokaNAz) 15:31.62

(71.24, 2:26.70, 3:38.84, 4:52.44);

10. Kellyn Taylor (HokaNAz) 15:32.19

(74.48, 2:27.95, 3:39.62, 4:52.49);

11. Stephanie Garcia (NBal) 15:47.61;

12. Josette Norris (Gtn) 15:48.51;

13. Kim Conley (NBal) 15:56.02;

14. Abbey Cooper (NBal) 15:56.20;

15. Danielle Shanahan (HokaNAz) 15:57.96;

16. Katrina Coogan (NBalB) 15:59.92;

17. Allie Buchalski (BrkB) 16:02.25;

18. Erika Kemp (BAA) 16:02.88;

19. Cally Macumber (NomadTC) 16:07.63;

20. Emily Lipari (adiMission) 16:09.09;

21. Breanna Sieracki (TMn) 16:20.47;

22. Jaci Smith (USAF) 16:35.37;

… dnf—Lauren Paquette (unat).

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