Mick Iacofano is ready for the next chapter in his running career.
Iacofano, a 2013 St. Vincent-St. Mary graduate, is set to run on the cross country and track and field teams at the University of Kentucky.
“I am really excited to get started,” Iacofano said. “The summer has been going well with training. We are experiencing a coaching change at the University of Kentucky, but I am following the training plan for the summer. I am feeling very strong and am probably the strongest and most fit I have felt.”
Iacofano, who is 5-foot-11, won the Division II individual state championship in cross country as a senior in a personal-best time of 15 minutes, 32.98 seconds. He earned eight letters at St. V-M, four apiece in cross country and track and field.
Iacofano, 18, qualified for the state cross country meet all four seasons and helped St. V-M finish as state runner-up during his sophomore and junior seasons. The Fighting Irish were sixth during his freshman and senior seasons.
He also competed at the Division II state track and field meet as a junior and senior. During his junior year, he contributed on the Irish 3,200-meter relay that won a state title and placed fifth in the 3,200. St. V-M was team runner-up. He helped the Irish win a track and field team state title as a senior and placed in three events: 3,200 relay (fourth), 1,600 (third) and 3,200 (fifth).
“Mick is the third runner for me to win a state championship in cross country,” St. V-M cross country and track and field coach Dan Lancianese said. “We really did think he had a shot at the triple crown by winning the mile and two mile on the track after winning in cross country.
“He has a lot of potential. He is a workhorse and constantly trying to improve his game.”
Lancianese reflected on Iacofano’s career at St. V-M, which included a memorable performance in a dual track and field meet at Walsh Jesuit.
“Mick did four events in that dual at Walsh,” Lancianese said. “He ran the mile, the two mile, the 800 and the 4x800 relay. He gave an unbelievable performance. I didn’t ask him to do it. He just volunteered to do it and we won that dual meet.”
Iacofano said he plans to major in biosystems engineering at UK, where he received partial athletic and partial academic scholarships. He also considered going to Kent State, Miami and Eastern Michigan.
He hopes to compete in the 3,000 steeplechase, the 1,500 and the 3.1-mile race in college.
Former Coventry standout Eric Ashley is set to play soccer this season at Canisius College after transferring from Ashland University. Ashley was forced to transfer when Ashland discontinued its men’s soccer program on May 29.
Ashley, a 5-foot-8 and 160-pound forward, graduated from Coventry in 2012. He led Ashland in goals as a freshman with five and also had two assists. He was named to the All-Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference second-team after helping the Eagles finish 8-8-2 overall and 6-6-1 in league play.
The Golden Griffins are a member of the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference.
The Eagles decided to eliminate their men’s soccer program due to financial and equity concerns.
Ashley was the 2011 Portage Trail Conference Metro Division Player of the Year as a senior. He scored 31 goals during his senior season, and was an All-Ohio and all-district selection.
Ashley scored 72 career goals at Coventry and helped the Comets win sectional championships in 2010 and 2011, and a PTC Metro title in 2011. He earned nine letters at Coventry, four in soccer, three in football and two in baseball.
Michael Beaven can be reached at 330-996-3829 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Read the high school blog at http://www.ohio.com/preps. Follow him on Twitter at http://twitter.com/MBeavenABJ and on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/sports.abj.