GVSU - Women Lead GLIAC Championships After Day One

GVSU - Women Lead GLIAC Championships After Day One

Provided by GVSU

Findlay, Ohio - The top-ranked Grand Valley State women's track and field team won four events on day one of the 2012 GLIAC Indoor Track & Field Championship en route to a first-place score of 66 points after day one of the competition.

The distance medley relay team of senior Betsy Graney, freshman Jordan Chester, senior Chanelle Caldwell and senior Rachel Patterson won the event with a GLIAC indoor championship meet record of 11:35.63, also an NCAA Division II automatic qualifying mark and a Malcolm Athletic Center record.

The only running event final of the day saw the Lakers place four student-athletes in the top seven. Freshman Ann Marie Arsenau won the event with a time of 17:34.56 and was the only student-athlete to hit a provisional qualifying mark. Freshman Lindsey Lusardi (17:42.59), sophomore Molly Slavens (17:55.15) and junior Courtney Brewis (18:07.07) finished in fifth, sixth and seventh, respectively.

Out of the three field events that were completed on Friday, the Lakers claimed titles in two of them. Senior Jocelyn Kuksa matched last year's meet record in the pole vault by clearing a provisional qualifying height of 3.95 meters (12'11.5"). Sophomore Kristen Hixson finished just behind in second, hitting a provisional mark of 3.80 meters (12'5.5"). Freshman Jacqueline Williams also hit a provisional mark, clearing 3.50 meters (11'5.75") to finish in seventh place.

The Lakers had four student-athletes hit qualifying marks in the weight throw competition. Junior Liz Murphy won the event with a toss of 21.19 meters (69'6.25"), the top throw in NCAA Division II this season. The toss was a GLIAC indoor championship meet record, Malcolm Athletic Center Record and an automatic qualifying mark. Just behind her was junior Sam Lockhart at 20.56 meters (67'5.5"), also an automatic qualifying mark.

Hitting provisional marks in the competition were junior Jamie Smith (17.87m/58'7.5") and sophomore Alyssa Zokoe (16.54m/54'3.25").

In preliminary competition, the Lakers have placed three student-athletes in the finals of the 60 meter dash. Freshman Brittney Banister qualified third with a time of 7.73 seconds, a provisional qualifying mark. Sophomore Brittney Jackson also hit a provisional mark with a time of 7.75 seconds to qualify fifth. Sneaking in to the finals was freshman Carly Scott, who was eighth with a time of 7.83 seconds.

Banister, who entered the meet with the top 200 meter dash mark in the conference, backed that claim up by being the top qualifier in the event with a time of 25.23 seconds, a provisional qualifying mark. Joining her in the finals will be Scott, who was seventh with a time of 26.21 seconds.

Sophomore Leiah Hess has qualified second for the 400 meter dash with a time of 58.11 seconds and will be joined in the finals by freshman Allison Clark who finished eighth in the prelims with a time of 1:00.00.

The Lakers will also have two student-athletes in the 60 meter hurdle finals as sophomore Kalena Franklin finished second with a time of 8.68 seconds, a provisional qualifying mark. Qualifying eighth was senior Jade Hull with a time of 8.96 seconds.

GVSU, in search of their 13th straight GLIAC indoor title, leads the field with 66 points. In second place is Ashland with 53 points. Tiffin follows in third with 29 points. Saginaw Valley State (22.5) and Hillsdale (17.5) round out the top five.

The final day of the 2012 GLIAC Indoor Track & Field Championships will get under way at 11 a.m. on Saturday (Feb. 25) with the field events, while the running events will begin at 1:15 p.m.