Hillsdale Women - We Are The Champions!
Provided by Hillsdale
Track and field athletes spend hundreds upon hundreds of hours running, training, doing repetitions that sometimes might lead to improvement, but more often than not, can lead to pain and frustration.
All that work was worth it for the Hillsdale College women's track team.
The Chargers put on a magnificent performance in their first-ever Great Midwest Athletic Conference championship event, winning the 2017-18 indoor title in an overwhelming performance.
Hillsdale accumulated 199 points to win the G-MAC women's indoor track championship, held this weekend at its very own Margot V. Biermann Athletic Center. The Chargers won the championship by more than 100 points over second-place Walsh, who had 98.5 points.
Ursuline finished third with 89 points, and was followed by Malone (69) and Findlay (54), rounding out the top five.
This was the first conference championship for the Charger program since 1999.
Hillsdale won five event championships, all of them coming on Saturday's second day. The Chargers didn't win a single individual event during Friday's competition, yet ended the night leading the pack with 40 points, thanks to its superior depth across many different events.
The run on titles began Saturday when Chloe Ohlgren won the triple jump with a mark of 11.19 meters. She was Hillsdale's first-ever G-MAC women's indoor track champion, but would be far from the last.
Freshman Zalonya Eby had a brilliant weekend, taking second in the 60 meter dash (7.76 seconds) while winning the 200 meter dash in 25.1 seconds. Eby ran the lead leg of the championship 4x400 meter relay team, winning the event along with Victoria Wichman, Ashlee Moran and Abbie Porter.
Eby was named the 2018 G-MAC Women's Freshman of the Meet, and was one of the top five individual point scorers on the women's side in the entire meet. Hillsdale's dominance in the point totals had a lot to do with Eby's excellence all weekend.
Moran, a senior, piled up tons of valuable points for her team, placing third in the 200 and fourth in the 60. She was joined in both races by Fiona Shea, who ran right behind Moran and kept the points rolling Hillsdale's way.
Porter had a terrific day on Saturday, winning the 800 meter run in 2:14 for her first career conference title. She also ran the second leg in Friday night's distance medley relay, teaming up with Ally Eads, Hannah Watts and Hannah McIntyre for a second-place time of 11:53.15.
McIntyre led a top-four sweep in the 3000 meter run with an NCAA auto-qualifying time of 9:33.91. She outpaced the field by 17 seconds, but there were plenty of familiar faces joining her at the top of the standings in the 3K.
Freshman Maryssa Depies took second with a 9:50.78. Arena Lewis was third in the 3000 (9:57.93), while freshman Christina Sawyer was fourth with a time of 10:10.96. How dominant was this Hillsdale foursome? Sawyer, fourth on her own team in this race, finished seven seconds ahead of her nearest competitor from the other 12 G-MAC schools.
Freshman Kyleigh Edwards also turned in a strong performance in a distance race, taking second in the 5000 meter run with a time of 17:25.83.
The Chargers scored even more points across several field events. Kristin Freeman stepped up strong in the pentathlon, tasking third with 2,254 points. Senior Rachael Tolsma was the runner up in the weight throw, clearing 17.92 meters with her best toss. Sophomore Kathryn Bassett was the conference runner up in the pole vault, clearing 3.47 meters.
Next up for the Chargers are the NCAA championships in two weeks, hosted by Pittsburg State University in Kansas.