AFTER a below-par outdoor season in 2012 where she failed to run a personal best and placed outside the world's top 200 in the 400m, 800m and 1,500m, Natoya Goule has given a clear indication next year could
A junior at Louisiana State University (LSU), the 21-year-old Goule has so far taken part in three cross country races, a 6K and 5K in September and a 6K this month, namely the Chile Pepper Cross Country Festival in Arkansas.
LSU athletes placed fourth, 32nd, 43rd, 55th, and 61st out of the 341 runners participating. The team finished fourth overall, after Arkansas, Oklahoma State, and Southern Methodist University (SMU).
LSU head coach Mark Elliott said after the Chile Pepper event: "The women are doing extremely well. I have been around a long time and that is probably the highest team finish for women in a big cross country race."
Senior Laura Carleton finished fourth, her third straight year in the top five, in a time of 20 minutes, 59.83 seconds. Goule, last year's Central American and Caribbean Championships 800m bronze medallist, placed 32nd clocking 22:06.11.
Goule, a past student of Manchester High, was even faster at the LSU Tiger Cross Country Festival 6K on September 22 at High Road Park when she placed second in 21.00.77, behind teammate Carleton, who won in 20.34.71.
In the Women's 5K at the Asics McNeese Cowboy Stampede, Goule clocked 18:20.00 for third, behind LSU teammates Carleton, who won in 17.51.00, and runner-up Dakota Goodman, 18.17.00.
In 2012, the CAC Junior 800m champion ranked 241 in the 400m, 295 in the 800m, and 1,147 in the 1500m. Her only achievement was winning the two-lap event at the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) Championships in Levelland, Texas on May 17 in a time of 2:09.54.
The Manchester standout is hoping for another 2011 when she clocked personal bests in the 400m (51.52sec), 600m, 600m, 800m (2:01.45) and 1,000m.