Women’s track and field went back and forth with regional rival MIT on Saturday at Lee Track. The No. 4 Engineers got out to an early lead but the No. 3 Ephs stormed back late. At the end of the day, the women edged MIT 102.50-98.50.
The meet began in the field, and Stella Worters ’18 started off strong for the Ephs on the javelin runway. She completed an uncommon feat: she finished third in the javelin and third in the 800m and ran the leadoff leg on the first-place 4×800 relay.
Alejandra Moran ’17 threw a personal-best 43.83 meters in hammer for a third-place finish, and Katie Loftus ’19 threw 36.60 meters for fourth and a crucial point for the Ephs. Moran came in third with a 37.48-meter toss in the discus and earned fourth in the shot put with a mark of 10.51 meters. Co-captain Candice Dyce ’17, an All-American triple jumper, threw 11.13 meters in the shot put for third place.
In the triple jump, Dyce led a Williams sweep, tying with Chloe Rogers ’17 for first with identical marks of 12.01 meters. Kene Odenigbo ’19, jumping off a longer board for the first time, finished third with a mark of 10.96 meters, and Sierra Diaz ’20 leaped 10.94 meters for fourth. Dyce and Rogers also secured second and third in the long jump, with respective marks of 5.69 and 5.53 meters.
Maggie Murphy ’19 prevailed over a strong crosswind in pole vault, jumping 3.25 meters for third against a talented cadre of MIT vaulters. The Ephs closed out the field events with a one-two-three finish in the high jump. Helene Hall ’18 won the event, clearing 1.70 meters on her first attempt. Emma Egan ’20 and Summer-Solstice Thomas ’20 followed close behind in second and third, respectively.
The Ephs capitalized on the momentum from the field and channeled their efforts into gritty performances on the track in the second half of the meet. Kennedy Green ’19 set a personal best with her victory in the 100m, storming across the line in 12.22 seconds. Denver Williams ’19 also had a personal best in the event, running 12.49 for fourth. Both returned for the 200m and set additional personal bests. Green won in 25.06, and Williams held off a surging MIT competitor to cross the line second in 25.12. Megan Powell ’20 followed in a personal best of 25.32 for fourth; she also won the 400m in 57.19. Sierra Loomis ’20 and co-captain Laura Lee ’17 placed third and fourth, respectively.
The women worked together to run strategic races and fast times in middle-distance events. In the 800m, Yvonne Bungei ’17, Worters and Katie Spence ’18 went two-three-four. Bungei led the group in two minutes, 17.72 seconds, and Worters followed with in 2:19.31. Spence, in her first 800m of the season, went out strong and finished in 2:21.36.
The 1500m went out slowly, but Anna Harleen ’18 and Anna Passannante ’20 drew on their speed training and pulled away in the last lap to earn first and second. Harleen finished in 4:41.62, and Passannante crossed the line 4:43.51. Similarly, Emma Herrmann ’20 and Emma Zehner ’17 had strong last laps in the 5k. Both set season bests in the event, running 17:35.29 and 17:36.53, respectively. Victoria Kingham ’18 ran a gutsy race mostly alone in 18:11.37 for a fourth-place finish and a valuable point for the Ephs.
The women also performed strongly in the hurdling events. Thomas ran 16.15 in the 100m hurdles for third. Co-captain Alyza Ngbokoli ’17 finished in 15.59 for second and also ran 1:03.67 in the 400-meter hurdles for third. Kayley McGonagle ’18 secured silver in the same event, crossing the line in 1:03.51. Carmen Bango ’20 ran a strong, consistent 3000m steeplechase, catching a competitor in the last lap to clinch a crucial second-place finish in 11:14.18, a personal best.
The Ephs were down by one point going into the 4×800 relay, and the team lined the track to cheer for the four women in the final event. Worters opened a gap with a strong leadoff leg and handed off to Bungei, who held the distance. Harleen ran a solid third leg and put Passannante in position to anchor the Ephs to victory. When Passannante crossed the line, the clock read 9:18.91, and the Ephs secured the final few points they needed clinch the narrow victory.
“It’s always fun to come together with MIT for a dual,” Head Coach Nate Hoey said. “We faced our share of adversity, but we focused on one event at a time, competing with positive energy throughout. I am excited to see what’s ahead.”
The women will compete at the Princeton and Springfield Invitationals this weekend, as they prepare for NESCACs at Bowdoin on April 29.