April 15, 1999
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – University of Virginia cross country/track and field performer Bob Thiele (Charlottesville, Va./Albemarle) was named to the 1998 Men’s NCAA Division I All-Academic Cross Country Team by the United States Cross Country Coaches Association (USCCCA). Thiele, a second-year engineering science major at UVa, has helped put both himself and Virginia on the cross country map. Aside from Thieles individual honor, the entire University of Virginia cross country team earned All-Academic honors from USCCCA by obtaining a 3.00 grade point average.
Although expectations for Thiele heading into the 1998 cross country season were high, no one may have had their sights set any higher for Thiele than he did himself. He was Virginia’s top finisher in five of UVas six cross country competitions. He performed so well during the season, he advanced to compete in the 1998 NCAA Division I Cross Country Championships in Lawrence, Kansas where he finished a very respectable 62 out of 247 runner with a time of 31:39.10 in the mens 10,000 meter run. His performance was even more noteworthy considering his competitors made up the strongest field of competition he had faced the entire season.
Thiele was by no mean a hidden secret in the Atlantic Coast Conference in 1998. He was twice named the ACC Mens Performer of the Week (October 20 & September 14). Aside from gathering conference recognition, Thiele earned NCAA All-Southeast Regional honors after finishing fifth in the 10,000 meter run with a time of 30:15 in the Southeast Regional in Greenville, S.C. He was also named to the ACC All-Conference team after finishing fourth in the ACC Cross Country Championships in Charlottesville, Va. with a mark of 24:53.30. He recorded a career-best time of 24:21.32 in the Paul Short Run in Bethlehem, Pa.
Thiele also had a solid ACC indoor track and field season, where he finished as Virginias top runner in both the 3,000 meter run (8:18.74) and the 5,000 meter run (14:25,79). He also recorded UVas second best time of 4:11.32 in the one mile run. Thiele took fourth place in the 5,000 meter run (14:32.58) and finished seventh in the 3,000 meter run (8:20.77) at the ACC Indoor Championship in Blacksburg, Va.
During the 1997-98 season, Thiele had an outstanding freshman campaign. He was an immediate contributor to the both the cross country and track and field teams as he ran various distance events from the 1,500 meter to the 10,000 meter runs. He recorded a 25th-place finish in the IC4A Championships with a career-best time of 25:36.40, and captured 40th in the ACC Championships (25:53.60). Thiele placed 35th in the NCAA Southeast Regional Championships (31:50) and ran a (29:58.29) in the 10,000 meter run at the Penn Relays, which was the fifth fastest freshman time in the U.S. He finished fifth in the 5,000 meter run at the ACC Indoor Championships (14:35.57) and placed fifth in the 5,000 meter run at the ACC Outdoor Championships (14:38.25). Thiele also captured 18th in the 5,000 meter run at the IC4A (14:38.95). In his first collegiate race on the track and field team, he placed fourth in the 5,000 meter run at the IOS Invitational (14:45.95).
In high school, Thiele captured the Group AA state championship in cross country as a junior and a senior. He was the Virginia state runner-up in the 800 meters, 1,600 meters and the 4×800-meter relay as a senior. As a junior, Thiele earned All-America status in the two-mile run. He also won the 1,600 meters at the Group AA state meet that year. Thiele was named the Central Virginia boys track performer of the year in 1996 by the Charlottesville Daily Progress. He also played soccer at Charlottesville High School. Thiele excelled as well at running as he did in the classroom, as he ranked first in his high school class. He was the 1996 Dartmouth Book Award recipient and is a Rodman Scholar in the School of Engineering at the University of Virginia.
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