Ten Individuals, One Relay Squad Eligible for ECAC Championships

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Elle Brunsdale and Amanda Snajder. (photo by Sam Rubin '95, Yale Sports Publicity)

Garry, Wilson Rank in Top-20 Qualifiers

NEW HAVEN, Conn.—While the full Yale women's track and field team completed its final meet last weekend with the conclusion of the Ivy League Heptagonal Championships, a few members will continue to compete, as they have qualified for the Division I 2014 ECAC Championships. Ten individuals are eligible to travel to Princeton, N.J., this Friday through Sunday to compete against other NCAA Division I qualifiers at the school's William Weaver Track & Field Stadium. A complete schedule is available here. Live results will be offered at http://tumeytiming.com/.

In order to qualify to compete at the Outdoor ECAC Championships, athletes had to meet steep entry standards sometime during their season. This year, top indoor marks are being considered for entry in addition to marks earned during the outdoor season, allowing some athletes like junior Kira Garry to be eligible to compete in many events. Although Garry has qualified to compete in the 1,500-meter, 3,000-meter and 5,000-meter runs, she will likely focus her efforts on her performance in the 3,000-meter steeplechase. Her Yale record in the event currently ranks her at No. 8 among the 38 qualifiers—the highest ranking of any Bulldog entering the meet. Last year, Garry placed fifth in the event.

Two additional long distance competitors—sophomores Elizabeth McDonald and Emily Stark—are eligible to compete in both the 3,000-meter and 5,000-meter runs. The two are ranked close together in both events. McDonald stands at No. 71 and No. 60, while Stark ranks No. 74 and No. 63 in the 3,000-meter and 5,000-meter runs, respectively. Both events will likely have more than 100 entrants. However, Stark's best chance to place at the meet will come from the longest race offered in track and field, the 10,000-meter run, which will take place on the same day as the 5,000-meter run. She currently ranks No. 27 out of 90 qualifiers. 

Sophomore Shannon McDonnell will have the opportunity to compete in the 800-meter run, as she met the qualifying standard on both indoor and outdoor tracks. Her best time from the indoor season—which claimed her the all-time fourth-fastest Yale mark—ranks her at No. 40.

While junior Emily Cable qualified for the meet early in her season, her time in the 400-meter dash last weekend of 54.37 at the Ivy League Heptagonal Championships catapulted her to No. 24 in the rankings. She is also eligible to compete in the 200-meter dash (No. 57), though the events will be held without much time in between. Both of Cable's qualifying times are the second-fastest marks ever seen at Yale.

As the team has also qualified to enter any four Bulldogs in the 4x800-meter relay, a few select Yale freshmen may have the chance to toe the line at the ECAC Championships early in their careers. In the past, freshmen Frances Schmiede and Emily Waligurski have been important members of the 4x800-meter relay squad. The event also offers an opportunity for its contenders to place—as Yale's indoor season best is the tenth-fastest time registered.

Both senior Amanda Snajder and junior Elle Brunsdale are fresh off personal-best performances in the heptathlon last weekend. These have placed them at No. 20 and No. 24 in the ECAC heptathlon rankings, respectively. Snajder's score marks a Yale record in the heptathlon, which is comprised of seven different individual events. In past years, she has spent her outdoor season preparing to compete in two heptathlons —the first at the Heptagonal Championships, followed by this weekend's ECAC Championships.

Finally, Yale's three representatives in the field events are junior Alisha Jordan, senior Emily Urciuoli and sophomore Karleh Wilson—each in her signature event. Jordan's season-best performance at the Heptagonal Championships last weekend ranks her at No. 30 in the triple jump. It also marked a large improvement over her previous season-best jump, demonstrating the potential she has to excel at this weekend's meet. 

Urciuoli is one of only 30 individuals to meet the ECAC qualifying standard in the pole vault. This weekend marks the fourth time Urciuoli has competed at an ECAC Championship meet. As a senior, the meet will also be her last collegiate competitions unless she qualifies to continue on to the NCAA Regional meet. 

Wilson will have the chance to test her strength in both Friday's discus throw and Sunday's shot put, with a day of rest in between. She ranks above half the field in both events, with her Yale record in the shot put placing her at No. 20, while her all-time second-best mark in the discus throw positions her at No. 23. 

Report by Maria Seravalli '16, Yale Sports Publicity

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