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Track and field teams prep for NCAC Championships at Denison

Aleksi Pelkonen
Sports Editor

The College of Wooster Track and Field teams competed at the non-scoring Denison Big Red Invitational last weekend in order to prepare for the NCAC Championships on Saturday.

Strong performers at the invitational included Austin Hamlett ’20, finishing first in the 400-meter run in 50.84 seconds. Other strong performances came from Jack Petrecca ’19 and Elizabeth Obi ’18 in the high jump, who cleared six feet and nearly five feet, respectively.

Jacob Nowell ’18 achieved a season-best in the pole vault with a height of 11 feet, 11.75 inches. Brian Lief ’19, competing in the 1500-meter run, and Jarret Art ’19, competing in the long jump, each achieved runner-up honors. Spencer Wilson ’20 finished second in the discus throw and sixth in the hammer throw at the invitational.

Jackie White ’17 took top honors in the 1500-meter run. Julia Higgins ’19 won the 400-meter run, while teammate Regan Szalay ’20 finished third. The women’s 400-meter run was the last event of the day before the Invitational was cancelled due to inclement weather.

Brian Lief ’19 and Akwia Tilton ’20 were named NCAC Athletes of the Week for their performances in the Kenyon Invitational the week prior. They were able to build on their success last week with strong performances at Denison.

“It feels great to be named NCAC Athlete of the Week,” Lief said.

“I’m very humbled to have been named Athlete of the Week,” Tilton added.

While it was important for the team to try to perform well, many athletes stressed that this last invitational was more about preparation than performance.

“We used this meet as a tune-up for next week,” Lief said.

The NCAC Championships will be in Greencastle, Ind. on the campus of DePauw University this weekend.

In other track and field news, Carolyn Webster ’19 was runner-up in the NCAC Heptathlon Championships this weekend. Webster led the field with 2444 points after the first day of proceedings, before being overtaken by Emily Brown of Ohio Wesleyan University on the second and final day.

“Since this was my first heptathlon, I think nerves got the best of me,” Webster said. “I think the weather was also a difficult aspect of this meet, since it was 48 [degrees] and rainy one day and 85 [degrees] and sunny the next. It was very hard on the body.”

Webster’s second-place finish was the fourth year in a row that a Fighting Scot has finished runner-up in the women’s outdoor heptathlon. Webster will join her teammates in Greencastle, Ind. this weekend.

“Knowing that the NCAC Championships are our most important meet, we have to give it all we have,” said Lissette Torres ’18, a sprinter on the women’s team.

With a long, grueling season coming to an end, many athletes expressed excitement at finally being able to achieve their goals.

“Personally, I would love to finish in the top-three in any of the events that I compete in,” Tilton said. “I want to see all of us perform well and show everyone that Wooster has some very competitive athletes.”

“We all have to work together to get points on the board by giving it our all,” Torres added. “This is the meet we all work for.”

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