The women’s track and field team wrapped up a successful indoor season at the MIAC championships, taking second in the team competition for the first time since 1996. The Knights were led by their middle and long distance runners, taking all-conference honors in almost every event longer than 800-meters.
Simone Childs-Walker ’12 capped an indoor career undefeated at the conference championships in an individual event by winning the 3000- and 5000-meter races. Alison Smyth ’12 finished second in both events and Taylor ffitch ’12 was fourth in both. There were a lot of yellow jerseys finishing ahead of others. Also notable was Carrie Harshbarger’s ’13 performance in the 3000-meter run, dipping under the 11-minute barrier and beating a number of athletes in the faster section.
While Childs-Walker won the two long races, those weren’t the only events taken by the Knights. Ellie Wilson ’15 reached the finish line first in the 400-meter dash, capturing the title by six one-hundredths of a second. Clare Franco ’12 finished sixth in the same event. Wilson went on to take sixth in the 200-meter race.
Haley Johnson ’13 proved that she is a serious runner by winning the 1000-meter run. Teammates Sarah Trautman ’13, Kaitlin Randolph ’12, and Colette Celichowski ’15 also scored in the event, placing fifth, seventh, and eighth respectively. Randolph edged Johnson at the line in the 800-meter dash and the duo placed third and fourth in the race. Trautman and Celichowski represented the Knights in the mile, taking fourth and eighth.
Megan Erlandson ’12 just missed scoring in the 1000-meter, taking ninth, but she placed second in her other two events. Erlandson turned in her best conference meet performance in the pole vault and ran a solid leg of the 800 in the DMR. She teamed up with Smyth, Anna Persmarck ’15, and Childs-Walker, who were unfortunately just beaten by the Oles.
This all sets up very nicely for the outdoor season. The addition of the 10,000-meter run, discus, and javelin will help the Knights, as Kao Sutton ’14 and Avery Johnson ’15 will be able to chuck their favorite implements. Rachael Klehm ’13 returns from a term off to give the Knights a VERY strong 4 x 10,000 team. But unfortunately, that is not a traditional event. The loss of the 600 and 1000 will force the team to concentrate its middle distance strength even further. “Pushing” is a term we usually use in cross-country for the sixth and seventh runners, but we’re going to see it on the track this season.