The Indiana women’s track and field team was affected by the winter storm Thursday, as the team wasn’t able to compete in events Friday night due to bus travel issues heading up to the Meyo Invitational at the University of Notre Dame in South Bend, Indiana.
“It was unfortunate because we have some kids that would have benefited from competing last night,” head coach Ron Helmer said. “Thankfully, we got [a bus] scheduled at 3:00 yesterday and had a pretty good Saturday.”
After overcoming the travel complications, the Hoosiers were ready to compete Saturday morning. Athletes from 29 universities competed in the two-day meet.
In the women’s shot put, freshman Jayden Ulrich was the victor with a final mark of 16.96 meters, her best throw of the day. Senior Madison Pollard followed closely behind Ulrich with a throw of 16.46 meters to finish in second place. Freshman Makayla Hunter also had a solid performance with a throw of 14.74 meters, good for ninth place.
In the first women’s 3000-meter race, in which 38 athletes from the respective universities competed, freshman Alyssa Skorge finished in 11th place with a time of 9:45.92. Freshman Mikaela Ramirez finished closely behind in 14th place with a time of 9:47.08. Freshman Phoebe Bates ended the event with a new college best time of 9:50.81 and came in 21st. Bates smashed her old college best by almost thirty seconds to improve herself individually.
In the afternoon running of the women’s final 3000-meter race, freshman Mariah Wehrle was the sole competitor, coming in 14th place with a new personal best time of 9:24.35.
In the women’s 400-meter dash, sophomore Kaylee Lane finished second in heat four and seventh overall with a season best of 56.12 seconds.
In the 800-meter race, freshman Shynae Deas stole the show with a fourth-place finish in her heat and a fifth-place overall finish with a new personal record of 2:11.16. Deas beat her old personal best time in the event by .03 seconds.
“Today for me was about trusting myself and all the training I have put in so far,” Deas said. “When crossing the line and looking at the board it was the most relieving but exciting run I have had yet.”
Sophomore Jenna Barker and sophomore Elizabeth Stanhope also finished in seventh and eighth place in heat one, respectively. Barker finished in 14th place with a time of 2:12.80, while Stanhope finished in 16th with a mark of 2:13.54.
Four more Hoosiers competed in the 800-meter finals event. Senior Kelly Mindak finished in third place in heat one and in first place overall with a time of 2:05.99. Junior Bailey Hertenstein finished close behind with a personal best time of 2:06.74 to take fourth place in heat one and overall. Senior Hannah Stoffel finished with a time of 2:09.50 to come in eighth place in heat one and eleventh place overall. Freshman Maria Anderson finished in fourth place in heat two with a time of 2:09.61 and right behind Stoffel with a 12th-place overall finish.
In the 4 x 400 relay, Indiana sent just one relay team, consisting of Lane, freshman Morgan Snow, Anderson and sophomore Alyssa Robinson, to compete. The Hoosiers finished in second place in heat one and overall with a season-best time of 3:41.25.
Despite only one day of competition, multiple individuals accomplished personal bests or season bests at the Meyo Invitational.
“We got a lot done at Notre Dame,” Helmer said. “Our kids did a really good job taking advantage of the situation. We got better and that’s what we want to do.”
Indiana will come home to Harry Gladstein Fieldhouse on Friday to host the Hoosier Hills and then compete Saturday in the Windy City Invite in Chicago.