GVSU Laker Women Hit Eight Qualifying Marks, Murphy With Automatic
Provided by GVSU
Hillsdale, Mich./Ashland, Ohio - The second-ranked Grand Valley State women's track and field team competed at both the Hillsdale Gina Relays and Ashland Alumni Open on Saturday (Apr. 28). Between the two meets, the Lakers hit eight qualifying marks, one of them an automatic mark that ranks among the best in the country.
GVSU sent its throwers to the Ashland meet to compete among the nation's best. Junior Liz Murphy (Washington, Mich./Romeo) had the highlight of the day for the Lakers, competing in the hammer throw elite group. Murphy unleashed a toss of 59.52 meters, ranking her second in NCAA Division II currently and assuring her spot at the National Championship meet.
Also in the hammer throw, sophomore Alyssa Zokoe (Coopersville, Mich.) finished seventh with a toss of 53.10 meters, while junior Katelyn Fox (Belmont, Mich./Rockford) finished ninth with a throw of 51.91 meters. Both throws were provisional qualifying marks with Fox's throw being an improvement over her previous best this outdoor season.
The other provisional mark hit in Ashland was from junior Jamie Smith (Hickory Corners, Mich./Gull Lake) in the discus throw. Smith's fifth-place finish with a toss of 44.70 meters was a new top mark in the outdoor season for her.
On the final day of the Hillsdale Gina Relays, GVSU won three events and hit four more qualifying marks, all provisionals.
Sophomore Kalena Franklin (West Branch, Mich./Ogemaw Heights) finished second in the 100 meter hurdles with a time of 14.36 seconds, a provisional qualifying mark and the top Division II finisher in the event.
Franklin then teamed with senior Chanelle Caldwell (Toledo, Ohio/Indiana Tech), senior Adrienne Chandler (Okemos, Mich.) and freshman Brittney Banister (Flint, Mich./Carman-Ainsworth) to win the 4x400 meter relay with a provisional qualifying time of 3:48.47.
In the other relay, of the 4x100 meter variety, Banister teamed up with fellow freshmen Carly Scott (Schoolcraft, Mich.) and Michaela Lewis (Flint, Mich./Central) along with sophomore Brittney Jackson (Highland Hts., Ohio/Laurel) to win the event in a time of 47.56 seconds.
In the 400 meter hurdles, sophomore Lisa Galasso (Orion, Mich./Lake Orion) won the event with a time of 1:02.75.
The lone field competition that yielded provisional qualifying marks in Hillsdale was the pole vault. Freshman Jacqueline Williams (St. Clair Shores, Mich./Lakeview) and junior Amy Reynolds (Northville, Mich.) each hit provisional marks of 3.60 meters, Reynolds' clearance improving on her previous best this outdoor season.
Grand Valley State will now prepare for the GLIAC Championships, taking place at the GVSU Track & Field/Lacrosse Stadium May 2nd-4th.