West Chester, Pa. - The Bryn Mawr track and field team was back in action earlier Friday, competing in their final invitational before next weekend's Centennial Conference championships. The Owls put up numerous personal bests and even a new school record in the final tune-up, the West Chester University Open.
Bryn Mawr had a bit of an up-and-down day in the field events, but there were still some notable performances. Perhaps one of the most impressive on the day was a re-setting of the school record in the hammer throw by Gwendolyn Vary. The sophomore had set and broken the record three times already this season, and completed the task for a fourth time earlier today. Vary put up a long throw of 23.74 meters, good enough for sixth place in the event. She would also put up a strong performance in the discus throw, heaving a long of 23.12 meters for a tenth-place finish there. The Owls were led out in that event by Margaret Patchin, who helped set the stage for a solid day for Bryn Mawr with a longest throw of 17.60 meters.
In the shot put, Rebecca Craig set a new personal record with a very solid throw of 7.11 meters. Fellow junior Marissa Mirecki came in just behind Craig with a long of 6.53 meters herself. Mirecki would then go on to post a new season best throw in the javelin, making a long of 14.90 meters in that event. Jocelyn Martinez also participated in the javelin, and she also threw a season best distance of 14.24 meters.
The Owls also had some chances to get some work in the jumps as well. A couple of Bryn Mawr athletes competed in the long jump; Ashley Macina posted a long of 3.94 meters in the event while Tonja Nixon took seventh place overall with a long of 4.11 meters. Both were able to make some improvements to their approaches on the day, and they'll look to make those improvements count as the season winds down.
On the track, the Owls were busy all over the place. The distance events were particularly fruitful for Bryn Mawr on the day. In the 5000 meter run, Claudia Keep and Kate Edwards went 1-2 to start off the track events. Keep posted a time of 18:48 to take the win while Edwards came home in second with a total time of 19:23. Both were probably looking for better times, but they put on a great showing nonetheless. The pair built up a huge gap on the field in the first lap and dominated the rest of the way to take the top two spots.
Elaine Schmidt had yet another successful day herself, this time in the 1500 meter run. The senior distance specialist took the lead right from the gun and never looked back, setting a new personal record time of 4:57.44 en route to a victory in the event. There were several other strong finishes in the event for the Owls in the distance as well. Alex Beda took sixth place with a time of 5:14.97, Lizzie Robinson set a new personal record herself with a time of 5:35.37, and Patchin put up a strong time of 6:50.83.
Beda would also go on to run in the 400 meter dash. After a quick turnaround from the 1500m, Beda took fourth place in the event with a season best time of 1:07.29. Yue Yang also ran the event, and she put up a new season best time as well with a 1:07.50.
In the 100 meter dash, both Nixon and Hadiyyah Graves were back in action after competing in the Penn Relays yesterday, and neither of them showed any bad side effects from such a quick turnaround. Nixon took second in the event with a time of 13.08 and Graves followed right behind in third with a finish of 13.24.
Schmidt got back on the track for the 800 meter run, taking a second place spot to go with her victory from earlier, and she did so with a time of 2:23.08. Emily Xiong also competed in the event, and she put up a new personal record with a time of 3:16.30.
The team closed out the day with the 200 meter dash, and did so in grand fashion. Nixon managed to collect another second place finish in the event, finishing with a new personal record time of 27.53. She was less than two tenths of a second outside of the top spot as well. Tehzeeb Tyebjee took tenth place in the event with a new personal record time of her own, a 28.88s finish. Also running the event were Prerana Vaddi, who finished in 29.71; Rebekah Gallop, who posted a 30.01; and Yue Yang, who capped off the day for Bryn Mawr with a finish of 30.94.
Bryn Mawr head coach Jason Hewitt was proud of his team's accomplishments on their final day of competition before conferences. "This is a tough week for us. We have Penn Relays on Thursday and a Friday meet, plus students are still trying to finish papers and study for exams," stated Hewitt. "While I'm continually impressed by how much our athletes can handle, I'm looking forward to the Centennial Conference Championships when most of their work will be behind them!"
The all-important league championship meet is slated to kick off next Friday morning. The three-day event will wrap up on Sunday afternoon.