Chicago, Ill., April 22, 2017 – The Washington University in St. Louis track and field program opened the University Athletic Association (UAA) Outdoor Track & Field Championships hosted by the University of Chicago with two records, four event titles and several other first place finishes during prelims on Saturday at Stagg Field and Hayden Track.
After day one, the WashU women and men are both in second place. The women trail host Chicago by two points with 67 points, while the men have 70 points but trail Carnegie Mellon's leading score of 86.
Senior pole vaulter Everett Kleven reset his own school and UAA record for the Bears' men, reaching a new height of 5.12m to earn the UAA pole vault title. Kleven is the only WashU pole vaulter to have ascended past the 5.00m barrier and his latest clearance ranks third amidst Division III competition this season.
Junior Alison Lindsay highlighted the day one activities for the Bears' women with a title in the 3,000m steeplechase, posting a record UAA time of 10:41.56 which also ranks first in Division III on the season. One season after setting the UAA record with a time of 10:47.13, Lindsay dropped more than five seconds. Her time is the third fastest in WashU school history behind Lucy Cheadle (2014) and Sarah Fisher (2012). Sophomore Abby Martin also earned all-UAA honors by placing in the top-three, finishing second with a time of 11:15.90.
Both the Bears men and women excelled in the 4x800-relay as the groups' both captured UAA titles. Leading the way for the women were freshman Sara Mesiano, junior Annalise Wagner, junior Audrey Western and senior Ashley Knudson. The quartet placed first with a time of 9:18.79 which was nearly six and a half seconds faster than Chicago's runner-up finish.
The men's 4x800-relay group consisted of sophomore Chris Blagg, freshman Nick Matteucci, senior Mike Sullivan and senior Deko Ricketts. The Bears posted a winning time of 7:46.24 as they crossed the finish line more than two seconds ahead of Carnegie Mellon.
Additional all-UAA honors were earned by sophomore pole vaulters: Heidi Nassos (Pole Vault: 3.46m, Second) and Tim Goblirsch (Pole Vault: 4.56m, Third); and 10,000m runners freshman Paige Lawler (37:44.98, Second) and junior David O'Gara (31:08.91, Second).
Also scoring points for the Bears on Saturday were senior Betsy Wiener (Hammer: 37.65m, Sixth; Shot Put: 10.01m, Eighth), freshman Quin Preston (Hammer: 41.27m, Sixth), sophomore Dominique Meyer (Pole Vault: 3.46m, Fifth), junior Jacob Rother (Pole Vault: 4.41m, Fifth), freshman Cienna Jordan (Long Jump: 5.23m, Fifth), junior Michael Billington (Long Jump: 6.70m, Sixth), junior Ezugo Onejeme (Long Jump: 6.67m, Seventh), senior Kayla Harley (Shot Put: 10.10m, Seventh), freshman Randy Bentley (Shot Put: 13.23m, Seventh), sophomore Molly Shepherd (Steeplechase: 11:20.23, Fourth), junior Anna Maurer (Steeplechase: 11:23.33, Fifth), freshman Marco Quaroni (Steeplechase: 9:27.17, Fourth), sophomore Zac Christensen (Steeplechase: 9:32.48, Fifth), sophomore Tommy Fruhauf (Steeplechase: 9:33.88, Sixth), sophomore Lisa Gorham (10,000: 38:39.42, Eighth), sophomore Peter Johnsrud (10,000: 31.21.27, Fourth), senior Ryan Becker (10,000: 31.22.23, Fifth) and Ben Rosenkranz (10,000: 31.51.90, Eighth).
WashU also posted six first place times during the track preliminaries. Senior Rebecca Ridderhoff finished with two herself including the 100 hurdles (14.59) and 400 dash prelims (56.87). Joining Ridderhoff in the 100-hurdles finals on Sunday will be senior Daisy Ogede (14.71, Second), freshman Caitlin Cheeseboro (15.33, Tied-Sixth) and sophomore Jay Pittman (15.68, Eighth). Freshman Nicky Althoff also advanced to the 400 finals (59.62, Seventh).
Junior Roderick Smith led the pack in the 100 dash prelims with a time of 10.81 and he is joined by sophomore CJ Chin (11.17) in Sunday's finals. Ogede also solidified a trip to the finals on the women's side with a second place finish (12.12) as well as senior Kelli Hancock (12.49, Fifth).
Wagner and Knudson finished first and second in the 800 prelims, 2:15.15 and 2:15.28 respectively, while Ricketts (1:55.39, First) and senior Conor Cashner (1:56.56, Fifth) advanced to the men's finals.
Hancock set a new personal-best while recording the fastest prelim time of the night in the 400 hurdles when she crossed the finish line in 1:00.66. That time also ranks second in Division III this season as she shed more than ½ a second off her previous best time this year. Joining Hancock in the finals will be senior Anna Bailes (1:07.89, Fifth).
Ogede and Ridderhoff also secured spots in the 200 dash finals as Ogede placed second (24.64) and Ridderhoff placed fourth (25.01).
Sophomore Jason Singer will compete in multiple races on Sunday as he placed fourth in the 400 prelims (49.48) and eighth in the 200 dash (22.45). Freshman Jon Fleming placed eighth in the 400 prelims (50.73) as Smith led the Bears' men with a fourth place finish in the 200 dash prelims (21.80).
Sunday's competition begins at 10 a.m. with the women's triple jump, men's high jump, women's discuss and men's javelin. Track events start at 11:30 a.m. with the women's 4x100-relay. Be sure to stay up to date on all your Bears scores and awards by following @WashUBears on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.