Eastern Michigan University’s women’s track and field team took third place in the 2014 Mid-American Conference Indoor Track and Field Championships held in Kent, Ohio on Feb. 28-Mar. 1 at the Kent State Field House.
The Eagles finished with 91.50 points behind defending MAC Champion Kent State University (127.50) and the University of Akron (98.50).
At the conclusion of the first day of the 2014 MAC Championships, the Eagles led all teams with 40 points, holding a seven-point margin over host school and defending champion Kent State University. The Green and White won three of the five scored events, two of which set EMU as well as MAC Championship records.
In the other two events, the Eagles recorded personal-best marks.
The first record to be broken by an Eagle was the pentathlon, won by senior transfer Sarah Chauchard on day one of the event.
Chauchard broke her own school record that was set at the Findlay Classic, Jan. 24, when she amassed 4,153 points and became the only Eagle to earn more than 4,000 points.
Chauchard also bested the MAC Championship score, set in 2001 by Mary Varga, by 75 points. En route to her victory, Chauchard led the field in the shot put and long jump, while just missing out on winning the 800m run by a mere .06 seconds.
Chauchard scored personal-best marks in the 60m hurdles, high jump, long jump, and 800m run.
Seniors Pauline Chiariglione and Kate Wolanin also matched or exceeded their top scores in many of the events. Chiariglione improved in her shot put and 800m run, while Wolanin set a personal-best in the 800m run and matched her personal-best in the high jump when she tied for first with a jump of 1.74 meters/5 feet 8.50 inches.
Chiariglione finished the pentathlon in fifth place with a personal-best 3,781 points, while Wolanin took sixth with 3,630.
Yet another EMU and MAC record was set in the distance medley relay. Junior Taylor Knoll, sophomore Iesha Hardiman, junior Marina Manjon-Rivadulla and junior Victoria Voronko finished nearly two seconds ahead of Toledo’s DMR team in 11:29.96, surpassing the previous MAC record set in 2012 by Ohio by a margin of over three seconds.
EMU picked up its last victory of the day as Voronko won the 5000m by just under 10 seconds over Toledo’s Brooke Tullis. Voronko’s time of 16:33.49 was less than a half a second away from setting another MAC Championship standard.
In other scored events on the first day of competition, junior Adrienne Waisner and sophomore Makeda DeBardelaben both set personal-bests in the weight throw and long jump, respectively.
Waisner turned out the fourth-best throw in EMU history with a distance of 15.69 meters/51 feet 5.75 inches. DeBardelaben bested her career-high mark as she leapt 5.72 meters/18 feet 9.25 inches to take sixth.
At the end of the second day, in addition to the overall third-place finish, the Green and White claimed three runner-up spots and one individual victory throughout the eight events in which its athletes competed. Victoria Voronko completed her grueling four-event meet with a victory and a second-place finish, and was named the meet’s Most Valuable Performer at the end of the day’s events.
Voronko won the 3000m run with a time of 9:36.16 and crossed the line in the mile run at 4:53.20. Also competing alongside Voronko were senior Kayla Pfund who took 13th in the 3000m finish with a 10:10.09 finish and junior Taylor Knoll in the mile with a time of 5:04.61.
Sophomore Aaliyah McKinney matched her personal-best time of 7.54 to finish second in the 60m dash, just one hundredth of a second behind Bowling Green’s Jeanette Pettigrew. Junior Danielle Clark came in eighth, just .20 seconds behind McKinney. McKinney also scored for the Eagles in the 200m, finishing fifth in 24.54.
A second place finish was awarded to Wolanin in the high jump, as she cleared a height of 1.73m/ 5 feet 8.00 inches in her final Indoor MAC Championship event. This jump was behind the reigning MAC Champion and No. 3 high jumper in the nation, Dior Delophont of Kent State. Chauchard and Chiariglione also jumped for the Green and White with heights of 1.63 meters/5 feet 4.25 inches.
In the triple jump, DeBardelaben came close to the 12-meter mark as she bounded 11.98 meters/39 feet 3.75 inches for a fourth-place performance. Sophomore Ellie Braidic had a breakthrough performance in the pole vault, clearing 4.10 meters/13 feet 5.25 inches for a fourth-place finish.
Braidic’s jump was over a foot higher than her previous personal-best and also ranks her fourth on the list of all-time EMU indoor records.
Freshman Natalie Uy also took part in the pole vault with a sixth-place finish in her MAC debut.
The last event for the Eagles was the 4×400m relay. The team of Clark, Mckinney, Hardiman, and sophomore Morgan Yeadon finished in 3:47.45. Following the meet, Voronko was named meet MVP and Chauchard was awarded with the Most Outstanding Field Performance.
The 2014 MAC Indoor Championship marked the end of the Eagles’ indoor season. The women will take a short break before starting up their 2014 outdoor track and field season. The outdoor opener for the Green and White takes place in Raleigh, N.C. on Mar. 29-30 where the squad will take part in the Raleigh Relays.