Ephwomen capture seven relays at home on a beautiful April day

Twelve teams converged on Weston Field Saturday for the annual Williams Relays. Although there was no team scoring, many Williams athletes had strong showings, taking advantage of the beautiful weather to perform well.

The Ephs were led by their throwers, who won the relays in shot put, discus and hammer throw. For the throwing relays, each team entered three athletes. The top throws from each athlete were combined, and the team with the highest combined distance won.

Co-captain Rebecca Brooks ’00, Healy Thompson ’03 and Diane Williams ’02 swept the shot put, taking first, second, and third. Brooks won with her throw of 44’5”, followed by Thompson with 43’3” and Williams’ mark of 40’0”.

Brooks also won the hammer throw with a distance of 150’2”. Williams took third with a throw of 132’11”. Thompson provided third throw for the Ephs to help them win the hammer relay.

Williams also won the discus event with a throw of 136’10”. Brooks and Amy Geant ’03 joined her on the championship relay team. Williams’ throw set a new school record and also qualified her provisionally for the NCAA championships in May.

“Our throwers obviously did very well,” stated head coach Pete Farwell. “Winning three of the four throwing relays [all except javelin] was very impressive.”

The Ephs also won four running relays. Rita Forte ’03, Colleen Doody ’03, Janna Rearick ’02 and senior co-captain Tara Crowley teamed up to win the sprint medley relay, which consists of two 200-meter legs, one 400-meter leg and one 800-meter leg. Their winning time was 4:12.99.

The Ephs captured another victory in the distance medley relay, which consists of a 1200-meter, a 400-meter, an 800-meter and a 1600-meter. Terri O’Brien ’02, Hagan McCurdy ’01, Lauren Krisko ’00 and Jonnie Vasse ’02 won the relay with a time of 12:37.3.

Williams also won two 4×100 relays: the open 4×100 and the thrower’s 4×100, which can only be run by throwers. Rearick, Doody, co-captain Melissa Murphy ’00 and Forte competed in the regular 4×100, winning with a time of 49.7 seconds, good enough for a new school record. The throwing team of Geant, Thompson, Brooks and Williams won the throwers 4×100 relay.

Several Williams distance runners also had strong days. Vasse placed second in the 1500-meter run with a time of 4:41.91. Her time qualifies her provisionally for the NCAA championships. “Jonnie ran a great race,” commented Farwell. “She’s been looking good this season.”

In the 800-meter run, Doody and Crowley took second and third, respectively. Crowley finished in 2:16.28, while Doody finished in 2:15.85, just one-hundredth of a second off the NCAA provisional mark. The Ephs also received strong performances in the 2000-meter steeplechase. Sophomore Laura Bothwell placed second in a time of 7:55.8, followed by teammate Heather May ’00, who took fourth place with a time of 8:18.

In the sprinting events, Williams received several third place finishes. Carolyn Shank ’02 took third in the 400-meter hurdles with a time of 68.17. Forte placed third in the 100-meter dash with a time of 12.61.

The 4×400 relay team of Johanna Heinrichs ’02, Olma Fuentes ’03, Jen Hahn ’01 and Murphy also placed third with a time of 4:10.8.

“This meet was a picnic in the park,” said Farwell. “The weather was excellent, and we had a lot of good performances. We’re looking good for the next couple of weeks as we start moving into championship meets.”

The Ephs compete next at the Little Three Championships at Wesleyan on Saturday.

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