U of M - Ferlic Secures Second Team All-America Honors in Steeplechase

U of M - Ferlic Secures Second Team All-America Honors in Steeplechase

Provided by U of M

Site: Eugene, Ore. (Hayward Field)

Event: NCAA Outdoor Championships (Day 3)

U-M Team Result: No Team Score

Next U-M Event: Season Complete

EUGENE, Ore. -- The University of Michigan men's track and field team closed its week at the NCAA Outdoor Championships with senior/junior co-captain Mason Ferlic competing in both the 5,000-meter run and 3,000m steeplechase. Ferlic collected second team All-America honors in the latter during Friday's (June 12) final day of men's action at the University of Oregon's Hayward Field.

In the steeple, it was a self-admitted disappointing finish for Ferlic. Just a few complete laps into the race, he fell going over the water pit and was in recovery mode thereafter. Ferlic later said that he misjudged the distance to the barrier, and a late jump caused his fall. As the leaders pressed on, Ferlic was forced to regain composure quickly. He reclaimed his positioning and gave chase in an attempt to put himself in a position to score. Though no competitors broke away early, the steady pace -- 8:33.90 was the winning time -- wore on the Wolverine co-captain as he tried to fight back into scoring position.

After picking off several competitors to regain top-10 positioning with two-plus laps remaining, Ferlic was unable to push further and ultimately crossed in 12th place at 8:57.30, while University of Texas El Paso's Anthony Rotich edged out Arkansas' Stanley Kebenei for the title. Ferlic secured second team All-America honors with his placing, giving him three career All-America recognitions in the event (two second team, one first team).

He then had less than 90 minutes to prepare for the 5,000m run, but about 3,000 meters into the race, Ferlic made the decision to remove himself from the field.

The hosting Ducks of Oregon claimed the team title with 85 points. Today's action marks the end of the season for the Maize and Blue.

• Riffle, Rayyan All-Americans; Ferlic Advances in Steeplechase (June 10, 2015)


• After his 13th-place finish in 2013 earned him second team All-America honors and his fourth-place finish in 2014 brought first-team accolades, Mason Ferlic became Michigan's first-ever three-time All-American in the steeple, again claiming second team honors after tonight's 12th-place finish.

• Prior to Ferlic, Michigan's last back-to-back All-American in the steeple was Craig Forys, who accomplished the feat with ninth- and second-place finishes in 2011 and 2012, respectively. Before Forys, it was John Mortimer in 1997-98, a former teammate of current distance coach Kevin Sullivan.


Michigan Head Coach Jerry Clayton

On the close of fifth-year seniors Cody Riffle and Morsi Rayyan's careers here in Eugene and how special it is for them to finish at this meet ... "For them to make it to this meet in their senior years, their fifth years, is a credit to them. Obviously they would like to have finished a little higher than they did, but I thought they did an outstanding job getting to this meet, especially with Cody coming back from last year where he dealt with injuries all year. He came back strong this year, in the Big Ten meet and now in this meet. As for Morsi, what can you say? He has delivered at ever level in every meet we have had. Mark (Beams) didn't make it here, but he is another kid who did an outstanding job for us this year in that 10,000m run which is a very tough race. The big picture is that those guys came in with changing coaches and a lot going on and they could have gone in either direction, but they chose to really get behind this team and be great leaders for us. I am really thankful and appreciative of their support and what they have contributed to this program, not only athletically and academically, but as leaders."

On the injuries that Cody Riffle overcame throughout his career to return to this stage of competition and what that says about him as a competitor and person ... "When athletes deal with injuries it is easy to become negative and get down on yourself, and everyone goes through that (when they are injured), but it effects some more than others. With Cody's personality, he stayed positive, persevered through the rehab process and the things that he needed to do to get back to this level. He had that willpower, and I give him a lot of credit for that. Those are the kinds of things that, down the road, you will see people are able to use those things throughout their lives in other situations where you deal with adversity and have to overcome it. Staying positive, or attitude in general, is the key thing, and Cody certainly had that."

U-M Senior/Junior Co-captain Mason Ferlic

On his fall in the 3,000m steeplechase and efforts to recover from it ... "The fall was one of those nightmare situations. You never think about falling going in and when it happens it kind of slaps you in the face. I hit the water pit; it was a little physical in the first couple of laps with guys trying to find space. One of the guys cleared right before I jumped and I think I just mistimed it and smacked the front of it, really. All I remember was just going into, literally a vertical dive into the water pit. I rolled up, and my first thought was to run hard out of it. The next lap was alright, but it was emotionally draining; kind of a shock to the system. I started to think about the race and what was happening and how sopping wet and heavy my shorts and shoes were. I tried to get back in it when the hard decision came at the end I was just emotionally drained. I don't regret the fall -- it was just an uncontrollable situation -- but I regret not fighting through it more."

On his strategy after the fall and pulling out of the 5K race ... "A lot of things were going through my head (after the fall). It was just the wrong thing to have happen during the race. I thought I was going to come back for the 5K and really I was just trying to give it a go and use some of that anger and frustration in the 5K. But it was a quick turnaround, and I may have pulled the plug a little prematurely, but I have USAs to think about at this point, too. I knew the pace change was going to come hard in the 5K, and I could just tell I wasn't going to be ready for it."

Communications Contact: Chad Shepard