MINNEAPOLIS – The Carleton College women’s track and field team took full advantage of competing against top-level competition at the University of Minnesota’s Parents Day Open to post numerous personal-best times, including a school-record performance in the distance medley relay.
“We knew going into this meet that there would be some strong competition, and we could use that to our advantage,” said Carleton head coach Donna Ricks. “We thought that many of the athletes in this meet would be too aggressive, and that it would be important for us to be smart the first part of the race. We figured they would come back, and we would be able to work them down and use it to run some fast times. Our team ran with confidence and demonstrated how fast and fit they are right now.”
Things got off to a great start with the day’s first event, the distance medley relay. Alison Smyth (Sr./Billings, Mont./Billings West) ran the leadoff 1,200-meter leg and handed off to first-year Ellie Wilson (Fy./Roseville, Minn./Roseville), who ran a 57.8 in the 400-meter portion. Clare Franco (Sr./Brunswick, Maine/Brunswick) took over and posted a 2:17 half-mile before giving the baton to anchor Simone Childs-Walker (Sr./Seattle, Wash./Lakeside), who sealed the school record with a 5:06 mile anchor.
The quartet posted a combined time of 12:00.05, bettering the mark established in 2010 at the Ole Open Qualifier. “The relay certainly got everyone fired up to compete, and it seemed that every race just kept getting better,” Ricks said.
In the mile, Sarah Trautman (So./Lexington, Mass./BBN) and Colette Celichowski (Fy./Shorewood, Minn./Minnetonka) recorded significant personal bests as they placed fifth and seventh overall—in an event totaling 61 racers—with times of 5:10.09 and 5:11.57.
Wilson lowered her personal-best in the 200-meter dash, as she won her heat and finished fourth overall at 26.12.
Anna Persmark (Fy./Eugene, Ore./South Eugene) PR’d in the 600-meter dash, crossing the line at 1:42.40.
Haley Johnson (Jr./Golden Valley, Minn./Robbinsdale Cooper) eclipsed the three-minute mark in the 1,000-mtter run (2:59.86), besting a Minnesota (Div. I) runner at the line by .04 second. Johnson was one of seven racers to surpass the previous Parents Day Open meet record.
Carleton has one more meet—the Ole Open Qualifier next Saturday, Feb. 25—before the MIAC Indoor Track and Field Championships the following weekend in St. Paul.