Engineers In Second After Day One at NCAA Championship

Engineers In Second After Day One at NCAA Championship

THE BASICS:

- Location: Al B. Carius Track and Recreation Center - Naperville, Ill.

- The Lead: On day one of the NCAA Division III Indoor Track and Field Championship, the No. 4 ranked MIT women's team sits in second place out of 67 teams overall. The Engineers had three individuals and the distance medley relay team earned All-American status as MIT has 17 points through the first day of competition.

HOW IT HAPPENED:

- Junior Nneoma Okonkwo (Lagos, Nigeria) started the day for the Engineers with a fifth-place showing in the long jump to pick up four points for MIT. On her fifth attempt, she lept 18 feet, 9.75 inches to earn her first indoor All-American honor and second overall for her career.

- In the mile, senior Maryann Gong (Livermore, Calif.) qualified for Saturday's final as she ran a time of 5:01.92 and is the eighth qualifier out of 10 in the final. In her heat, Gong placed fifth to advance to Saturday as that race will begin at approximately 2 p.m. Eastern time.

- In the pole vault, the Engineers had an outstanding performance as both freshman Kaitlyn Sparks (Cape Town, South Africa) and sophomore Kari Stromhaug (Vestal, N.Y.) earned All-American accolades. Sparks was sixth in a personal-best of 12 feet, 3.5 inches, while Stromhaug placed seventh at the same height. Sparks held the edge after clearing the opening height on her first attempt.

- In the final women's event of the night, the Engineers finished as the national runner-up in the distance medley relay as MIT posted a time of 11:50.15. The team, which consisted of freshman Marissa McPhillips (Narragansett, R.I.), junior Hannah Chen (Los Gatos, Calif.), freshman Katie Bacher (Macungie, Pa.) and Gong, nearly chased down Washington U. in the end as the Engineers finished just 1.72 seconds out of first.

- Sophomore Bailey Tregoning (Frederick, Md.) narrowly missed out on qualifying for the final in the 800 as she finished 10th overall with a time of 2:14.81. Tregoning has now appeared at nationals in each of her first two years at MIT. 

UP NEXT:

- MIT wraps up the 2016-17 indoor season on Saturday as the Engineers compete on day two of the 2017 NCAA Division III National Championship. Action gets underway at 11 a.m. Eastern time. 

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