SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – Getting close to the conclusion of the season, a handful of the MIT women's track and field team traveled to Springfield College for the 2013 ECAC Division III Outdoor Track and Field Championships in hopes of improving on their performances in time for the upcoming NCAA championships. Over 1,400 student-athletes representing 97 institutions will compete in the two day ECAC Championships, which began on Thursday afternoon. At the end of the first day, the Engineers are sitting in first place with 30 points, with St. Lawrence in second with 23.
First up for the Engineers on the opening day of competition was junior Jaclyn Konopka (Novi, Mich.) in her signature event, the Heptathlon. With three events to go tomorrow, she is currently is second place with 2,876 points. Taylor Hudson of Cortland State is first with 2,967 and Alexis Maylor from Delaware Valley is third with 2,788 points. Konopka finished in second in the 100m Hurdles (15.25), third in the High Jump (5-03.00) and Shot Put (34-04.75), and fourth in the 200m (26.31). The Long Jump, Javelin Throw and 800m will take place tomorrow morning.
Senior Lauren Kuntz (Pittsburgh, Pa.) reprised her role at the top, winning the Pole Vault with a vault of 12-07.25, earning ten points towards MIT's final score. Freshmen Cimran Virdi (Walnut Creek, Calif.) and Sherry Wan (Ann Arbor, Mich.) finished in fifth and 14th with vaults of 12-01.25 and 11-01.50 respectively.
In the Javelin Throw, sophomore Tilly Taylor (South Deerfield, Mass.) came in fourth with a throw of 136-04. She improved greatly on her performance from last weekend's NEICAAAs, where she threw a 115-10. Classmate Michelle Johnson (Glendora, Calif.) finished in eighth place in the Triple Jump with a jump of 37-09.50, also improving slightly on her performance in the last meet. Sophomore Ashley Wheeler (Milford, N.H.) came in 15th place in the Hammer Throw with a throw of 150-11.
MIT's second win of the day came in the 5000m when senior Brooke Johnson (Shoreham, N.Y.) came first with a time of 17:09.69, crossing the line over nine seconds ahead of the second place finisher. Johnson improved her time from the New England Division III Championships by over 20 seconds.
Day two of ECACs will begin tomorrow at 11:00 a.m. with the remaining events of the Decathlon. The other field events will start soon after.