Princeton Invitational Offers Glimpse of Ivy League Competition
NEW HAVEN, Conn. – The track and field team will be traveling to their first meet of the outdoor season against Ivy League rivals. The Bulldogs will compete both Friday and Saturday at Princeton’s annual Sam Howell Invitational. About 15 teams will gather for the unscored meet, including Ivy League teams Columbia and Dartmouth. It will be the team’s first competition since their spring break meet at William and Mary.
This will be the first of many meets at Princeton’s Weaver Track and Field Stadium for the Bulldogs. They will return only a week later for the Princeton-Yale-Penn meet, and then later in the season for both the Heptagonal Championships and the ECAC Championships.
Last year only jumpers and throwers competed at the Sam Howell Invitational, as the team had split up and most runners traveled to a different meet. High winds and thunderstorms made it a difficult weekend, but juniors Eve King and Emily Standish competed in the high jump, and King also competed in the long jump and 800-meter run. Junior Liya Assefa competed in the 1,500-meter run.
This year Yale should have a much stronger performance since the entire team will be present. The team is coming off strong performances at William and Mary two weeks ago. Freshman Adele Jackson-Gibson posted the first win of her outdoor collegiate career in the 100-meter dash (12.35 seconds). Sophomores Marieme Mbaye, Alexa Monti and Emily Shulan finished close behind her. Later in the day, Jackson-Gibson, Mbaye, Monti and junior Kate Grace came in second in the 4x100 meter relay, less than a second shy of qualifying for ECACs. These sprinters certainly have the potential to make an impact in the outdoor season.
Yale runners also performed well in other short events; junior Claudia Duncan finished second in the 200-meter dash with a personal record of 25.28, and also finished second in the 400-meter dash with another PR (56.41). Grace, who specializes in middle distance, showed off her speed by finishing fourth in the 200-meter dash (25.56) and third in the 400-meter dash (57.68 – a PR).
There was another exciting relay performance for Yale, as Duncan, senior captain Faith Briggs, Grace, and freshman Allison Rue won the 4x400-meter relay in 3:52.27 – also less than a second away from meeting the ECAC-qualifying time.
In longer events, Yale will look primarily to seniors Stephanie Pearl and Alexandra Cadicamo, both of whom have performed well this year, as well as Assefa and sophomores Jennifer Downing and Anne Lovelace.
Yale’s throwers and jumpers will be relieved to compete in what should be warm, sunny weather at Sam Howell this weekend. Senior Rachel Kuschner and freshman Antonia Renker make up Yale’s throwing squad, both competing in the discus and hammer throw. Standish and King are Yale’s go-to competitors for the high and long jumps. Senior Bailey Carroll and freshman Jenna Poggi will be vaulting.
The Bulldogs have many opportunities to show impressive performances this weekend. Events will begin on Friday at 5 p.m., and resume Saturday at 11 a.m. More information can be found here. Results will be posted at YaleBulldogs.com at the end of each day.
Report by Kyle Eichner ’12, Yale Sports Publicity