Athlete of the Week: Nicole Hutchinson, Women’s XC


Courtesy of Villanova Athletics

Athlete of the Week: Nicole Hutchinson, Women’s XC

Addison Drone

Nicole Hutchinson came to the University because  women’s track and field head coach Gina Procaccio gave her the “best chance to fulfill her potential.” Since joining the team, Hutchinson has found her stride both in the classroom and in competition. Coming into her senior year, she has been a three-time All-American, six-time Big East Champion and has top ten times in school history in events such as the 5000m (15:46.22), 1500m (4:13.71) and the mile (4:36.16). She even ran for Canada in the IAAF World U20 Championships following her freshman year. At the University, she is majoring in accounting with a business law minor and cited VSB’s prestige as another factor leading her to becoming a Wildcat. In fact, she has a job lined up at PWC, one of the big four accounting firms, but she hopes to run for a few years professionally before joining the workforce. Incredibly, Nicole is trying to position herself where she can make it to Olympic Qualifying next year.

Even though she is a very accomplished athlete, she is very humble and highlighted how strong the women’s track and field team looks. She is really excited for the rest of the year. “The team is getting better every week,” she says. “We will outperform any ranking we get.” 

The Vancouver native has been running competitively since second grade, so she is surely unphased by the 60 miles the team runs each week. She said that the team’s schedule is a mix of workouts and endurance training. Additionally, she spoke about getting through the rigors of running, emphasizing how the team can bond through the strenuous, difficult workouts. She cites Procaccio’s positivity as a leading factor in pushing them through the workouts. Since Procaccio will often tell the runners, “If you tell yourself you feel great, then you will perform better” the team will shout “I feel great” or “I love hills” as they journey through the workout. According to Hutchinson, stressing her love of hills does in fact make the workout seem easier. 

Looking back, some of Hutchinson’s best collegiate moments came during the men’s basketball team’s two championship runs in her tenure along with the trips to meets she has taken with her teammates. Through the meets, training and everyday life, Nicole has been able to get very close with her team, and those bonds will surely carry on after she graduates this year.