Track: Lifetime Bests at BIG EAST

  • By Daniel Whitehead
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  • February 18, 2012 07:39 PM
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MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – With several athletes achieving season- and lifetime-best marks, the West Virginia track and field team got off to a good start to the BIG EAST Indoor Championships Saturday at The Armory in New York City.

Weight thrower Heather Adams earned a lifetime-best mark of 17.83 meters at the event, over four feet her previous personal-best mark. The distance was good enough for third place in the event.

Hurdler Chené Townsend also ran a personal record of 8.50 seconds in the 60-meter hurdles, beating her previous all-time best of 8.53 seconds. Her third-place mark advanced her to the finals round Sunday at noon.

“Heather Adams was tremendous today,” says WVU coach Sean Cleary. “Beating her personal best by that much in a championship setting is a great accomplishment. Chené looked very good in her hurdles semifinal. A lifetime-best for her was very encouraging.”

Sophomore Katlyn Shelar also had a strong day in the pole vault with a fifth-place finish at 3.75 meters.

“Katylyn had a clutch performance,” Cleary says. “I was impressed with her commitment to the competition. She has a very bright future.”

In the 5,000-meter run, junior Kaitlyn Gillespie led the team with a sixth-place mark at 16:42.41. Teammate Jessica O’Connell ran her first race of the year with an eighth-place finish in 16:59, while senior Ahna Lewis placed 13th in 17:14.

Long jumper Meghan Mock placed eighth in her event with a distance of 5.70 meters.

“Mock and O’Connell came through with great spirit for the team,” Cleary says. “Both were late additions to compete due to health issues. They will be big factors for us during the outdoor season. Gillespie did a lot of work in the 5k. She was the point woman for a mile and a half. She will eventually be strong enough to stay at the front.”

The distance medley relay team of Kaylyn Christopher, Jenna Barreto, Josie Crouch and Stephanie Aldea placed seventh in 11:44.08. Sarah Martinelli missed the cut by one placement in the mile run as she arrived in 13th place in 4:58.

The Mountaineers continue the BIG EAST Championships on Sunday set to compete in the 3,000-meter run, high jumps and triple jump and the 4x400 and 4x800 meter relays.


Sean Cleary, WVU track and field

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