Concordia Takes Shot At Day 1 Women's Outdoor Track Lead
Concordia took all 39 points in the women's shot put to take a substantial lead in the team race after day one with 71 points. Photo by Bryan Rubio.
Concordia took all 39 points in the women's shot put to take a substantial lead in the team race after day one with 71 points. Photo by Bryan Rubio.

Friday, May 11, 2018

MONMOUTH, Ore. – Alaska Anchorage’s Caroline Kurgat and Concordia’s Melissa Ausman set meet records while the Cavaliers accomplished an unprecedented feat in the shot put to highlight day one of the GNAC Women’s Outdoor Track and Field Championships, Friday at Western Oregon University’s McArthur Field.

Kurgat, the Division II leader in the 10,000 meters and the owner of the No. 4 time collegiately at all levels, cruised to win the event in a meet-record time of 34:49.33. She blew the previous mark of 35:43.38, set by former teammate Joyce Chelimo in 2014. Kurgat was the race by more than two minutes as she completed the first leg of a potential 1,500, 5,000 and 10,000 triple.

Ausman, meanwhile, blew away the meet record in the women’s discus with her winning mark of 173 feet, 11 inches. That bettered the previous record of 157 feet, 11.25 inches, set by former teammate and current Concordia assistant McKenzie Warren last year.

Both records, however, may not better the feat accomplished by the Cavaliers’ women’s shot put corps, which proceeded to sweep all eight scoring places in the event. Christina McDonald claimed the championship with a mark of 48 feet, 4.5 inches, while Ausman was second with a mark of 46 feet, 3.25 inches.

The shot put sweep accounted for 39 of the Cavaliers’ 71 team points, giving Concordia a commanding lead in the team race. Seattle Pacific sits in second place at 49.5 points followed Central Washington with 38 points and Western Washington with 37 points.

While not a meet record, Central Washington’s Mariyah Vongsaveng established a McArthur Field record in running the top time in the qualifying heats of the 100-meter hurdles. Her time of 13.84 seconds bettered the 13.90 seconds she ran last year.

The Falcons were bolstered by the efforts of freshman Renick Meyer, who added the long jump title to the heptathlon crown she won last week. Meyer won the event by nearly a foot with her mark of 19 feet, 4.75 inches. Meyer was also the top qualifier in the 100 meters with a time of 11.89 seconds.

Western Washington’s Maddie Taylor outlasted Seattle Pacific’s Geneva Lehnert for her first high jump championship, winning with a clearance of 5 feet, 5.25 inches. Reta Dobie gave Simon Fraser its first championship in the steeplechase, winning in a time of 10:43.38.

Joining Vongasaveng as a top qualifier in the running events for Central Washington was Ali Anderson, who turned in the top time in the 400-meter hurdles in 1:02.38.

Alaska Anchorage finished with two top qualifiers. Vanessa Aniteye took one step closer to defending her 400-meter championship as she turned in the top time of the preliminaries at 55.31 seconds. Teammate Marie Ries took the top time in the 200 meters at 24.91 seconds.

Simon Fraser’s Sophie Dodd was the top qualifier in the 800 meters, clocking a time of 2:09.14.

The final day of competition at the GNAC Women’s Outdoor Track and Field Championships begins at 10:30 a.m. with the javelin. Running events commence at noon.