February 16, 2013

MIT Women's Track & Field Finishes in Second at New England Div. III Champs

GORHAM, Maine - At the New England Division III Championships that were held at the University of Southern Maine this weekend, the MIT women's track and field team finished in second place out of 23 teams. The Engineers concluded the two-day meet with 109 points, just seven points behind Tufts University, who came in first. Williams College was third with 88.50 points. Freshman Sarah Quinn (Watchung, N.J.) finished in second place in the mile with a 4:56.20 and then came in first in the 3000 meters with a 9:58.93, finishing over 20 seconds ahead of the second place finisher. Senior Lauren Kuntz (Pittsburgh, Pa.) also had a first place finish when she vaulted 3.70 meters.

On Friday, junior Jaclyn Konopka (Novi, Mich.) was the lone Engineer to compete in the heptathlon, finishing in second place with a score of 3214.

Sophomore Cindy Huang (San Jose, Calif.) finished in third place in the 800 meters with a time of 2:18.20, earning six points for MIT. In the next event, the 1000 meters, senior Brooke Johnson (Shoreham, N.Y.) also finished in third place with a time of 2:59.75. She was followed by junior Louise van den Heuvel (Nashua, N.H.) in fifth with a 3:02.34. Also running the mile were junior Alexandra Taylor (Harbor Springs, Mich.), who came in eighth place with a 5:00.57 and Johnson, who came in tenth with a time of 5:02.76.

MIT's best showing was in the 3000 meters, where they took five of the top ten positions. Quinn came in first, sophomore Elaine McVay (San Ramon, Calif.) was third with a 10:20.01, junior Martina de Geus (Los Altos, Calif.) came in sixth in 10:26.64, freshman Nicole Zeinstra (Holland, Mich.) crossed the line in seventh place with a time of 10:38.58 and classmate Allison Hallock (Boulder, Colo.) came in ninth with a 10:29.20. The Engineers scored 21 points in that event alone.

McVay and de Geus competed in the next event, the 5000 meters, finishing in second and sixth place respectively. McVay finished the race in 17:19.72 and de Geus ended with a time of 17:57.81. Sophomores Kali Benavides (Miami, Fla.) and Shivani Kaushal (Grand Blanc, Mich.) came in seventh and 14th with times of 18:13.76 and 18:38.13 respectively.

The MIT Distance Medley relay that consisted of Zeinstra, sophomore Kayla Harris (Baton Rouge, La.), senior Marie Burkland (Almont, Mich.) and Hallock finished in first place with a time of 12:18.87. They finished three seconds ahead of Amherst's relay that crossed the line in 12:21.78.

Sophomore Preethi Vaidyanathan (South Windsor, Conn.) kicked things off for the field athletes with her third place finish in the high jump when she jumped 1.68 meters. In the pole vault, Kuntz came in first, freshman Cimran Virdi came fifth with 3.45 meters, sophomore Joanna Chen (Richland, Wash.) came in seventh with 3.30 meters, junior Abigail Klein (Bethesda, Md.) was ninth and sophomore Marissa Engle (Sunnyvale, Calif.) was tenth, both with 3.15 meters. Freshman Sherry Wan (Ann Arbor, Mich.) finished in 16th with 3.00 meters.

In the triple jump, sophomore Michelle Johnson (Glendora, Calif.) came in third with 11.07 meters. Freshman Katharina Ross (Port Jefferson, N.Y.) finished in 11th with 10.45 meters and junior Stephanie Birkhimer (Oneonta, N.Y.) was 15th with 10.29 meters. Freshman Isabella Stuopis (Amherst, N.H.) walked away with a fifth place finish in the shot put when she threw 12.55 meters.

MIT will return to action next weekend (Feb. 22-23) when they travel to Boston University for the NEICAAA Championship.