WMU - Track & Field in Fifth After Day One at MAC Championships

WMU - Track & Field in Fifth After Day One at MAC Championships

Provided by WMU

AKRON, Ohio -- After five events the Western Michigan women's track and field team sits in fifth place with 21 points after day one of the 2012 Indoor Mid-American Conference Championship at the University of Akron on Friday night.

The Broncos scored in the distance medley relay, long jump, 5,000 meter run and the pentathlon to stay within 16 points of first place Toledo.

One of the big highlights was senior Amber Brunmeier taking third place in the 5,000. Brunmeier nearly broke the 17 minute mark, finishing up with a time of 17:01.59. It was the first scoring for Brunmeier at the Indoor MAC Championships in her career. Brunmeier started off conservatively, pacing herself around 10th place but kept slowly moving up and by the half-way mark she was in fifth place. She slowly picked off the third and fourth place runners before finishing up and earning six points.

"The 5k was one of the most enjoyable races I have watched in a long time," said head coach Kelly Lycan. "It was just great to see Amber run like that and finish in the top three. She has come so far and kept at it. It was really gratifying to see work so hard and reap the benefits."

The distance medley relay team consisting of Cara Cremeans, Leya Munwam, Aisha Hodge and Rachel Whitley combined to run a time of 11:41.58 and take second overall, edging out Kent State by just under .40 seconds. Cremeans got the Broncos off to a good start in the 1,200 meter leg, keeping WMU in a mix of about five teams going into the first hand-off. Munwam kept the Broncos in second place before Hodge helped pull WMU into a tie for first before the mile leg. Whitley battled with a runner from Ohio but was able to hold on for second place.

Hodge and Whitley both went on to shine in the 800 meter run preliminaries with Hodge running the fastest qualifying time at 2:10.91. Whitley also won her heat with a time of 2:12.50.

"Aisha is really starting to gain some confidence," said Lycan. "The physical tools are there, she just needed to start believing she could do the same thing at the college level that she did at Bangor High school, and that's just beat people. She is really looking great right now and I'm looking forward to the finals tomorrow in that event."

Iris Campbell took third place in the long jump with a distance of 18 feet, 9.25 inches to earn six points for the Broncos. She also qualified for the 200 meter dash finals with the second fastest time of the day at 24.18 seconds. Campbell, along with Andrea Arnold and Victoria Chatman also qualified for the finals in the 400 meter dash. Campbell and sophomore Chiara Allen also qualified for the finals in the 60 meter hurdles.

Freshman Kathryn Pickett scored for the first time in her career at a MAC Championship by taking eighth place in the pentathlon, totalling up 3,527 points.

"Our conference is so competitive on the women's side," added Lycan. "It is going to be one heck of a finish."

The Broncos are back at it again on Saturday morning and look to make a move to win their first ever indoor MAC Championship.