Over the weekend, women’s track and field traveled to meets around the region to race for qualifying times for Nationals. The Ephs turned in many personal bests and strong performances in the meets, which helped to prepare the team for Nationals. This weekend, the Ephs made their presence known in the national rankings. Especially significant were the achievements of the distance medley relay (DMR) team, which is now ranked fourth in the nation, and of Emily Sundquist ’18, who moved up to an eighth place ranking in the 5k after her strong time in the meet.
“There were some very strong efforts on Friday. The energy level was high and we executed well,” Head Coach Nate Hoey commented.
On the nationally ranked DMR team, Laney Teaford ’17 ran the 1200 meter, Kayley McGonagle ’18 ran the 400 meter, Katie Spence ’18 sprinted the 800 meter and Victoria Kingham ’18 rounded out the relay with the mile for a collective team time of 11:50.47. Meanwhile, Sundquist earned a personal record of 17:19.53 in the 5k to move into the eighth place ranking in Div. III. Emma Zehner ’17, Yvonne Bungei ’17 and Anna Harleen ’18 also achieved personal records this weekend. Zehner finished the 5k in 17:36.49, Bungei completed the 800 meter in 2:17.48 and Harleen posted a time of 5:03.53 in the mile.
Also at the meet, co-captain Grace Weatherall ’16, Candice Dyce ’17 and Helene Hall ’18 contributed strong performances.
Weatherall finished the 60-meter hurdle in third with a time of 9:12 and jumped 5.19 meters in the long jump for a fifth place finish. Dyce finished fourth in the triple jump, spanning 11.20 meters. Finally, Hall rounded out the weekend’s performances with a jump of 1.50 meters in the high jump.
“We had a great distance medley relay performance by the women, who are now nationally ranked 4th going in to nationals this Saturday. Emily Sundquist also ran a huge personal record in the 5k,” Weatherall added.
Overall, the women’s track & field team will be represented by seven athletes competing in four individual events and one relay at the NCAA Division III Indoor Championships. A year ago, Hoey’s Ephs sent six athletes who competed in three events in the NCAA Championships and the women did not score.
One Eph athlete will compete in two individual events in the championship meet. Chloe Rogers ’17 is entered in both the high jump and the triple jump. Rogers is ranked ninth in the triple jump with a 38’ 7” effort, which places her in a good position to compete with jumpers from across the nation in the meet.
In the high jump she is ranked 15th, her best jump of the season thus far at a height of 5’ 6”.
Harleen qualified in the mile, but instead will compete on the Ephs’ Distance Medley Relay. Joining Harleen in the Distance Medley quartet will be McGonagle, Teaford (who also qualified in the mile, but is focusing on the relay) and Spence. The Ephs hope to build upon their strong time in the Tufts Last Chance Meet, which came in fourth in the nation for the season.
Kingham enters the team’s final indoor meet owning the seventh fastest time of the season at 4:56.79 in the mile.
Sundquist will represent the ephs in the 5k, hoping to build off a series of strong results in the warm-up meets for the National Championships. Sundquist’s season best is 17:19.53, ranking her ninth nationally in the event.
The women are primed and ready for the upcoming National Championships. The National Championships will be hosted by Grinnell College in Iowa on Mar. 9-12 at 9 a.m.