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ISSUE 120 VOL 19 PUBLISHED 4/27/2007

Women's track team hosts Manitou Classic

By Eric Monek Anderson
Sports Editor

Friday, April 27, 2007

If you were on campus last Saturday, you may have heard the dull drones of the announcer’s microphone echoing from Manitou Field, where the St. Olaf women'’s track and field team hosted a meet featuring 20 schools and 600 athletes. According to St. Olaf head coach Chris Daymont, the unscored Manitou Classic is the first outdoor meet where the team focuses on quality individual performances.

"“The meet wasn'’t scored so that individuals can concentrate on individual performances without having to worry about scoring points in multiple events,”" Daymont said.

Instead, the focus was on improving times and continuing the team’'s progress from the indoor season.

“"We have taken up where we left off indoors, and on both team and individual levels, the Oles are doing well,"” said Daymont. Team captain Andrea Gelle '‘07 led the way with an NCAA provisional-qualifying time of 4:39.62 and second-place finish in the 1500-meters. Gelle also ran the first leg of the second place 3200-meter relay, joined by Christina Roberts '‘08, Lindsay Saunders ‘'08 and Abby Smith '‘10.

The Oles even banded together during the 10,000-meter individual race, with three finishers in the top seven. Jenna Carlson ‘'09 won after winning the 5K in last week's meet, Brittany Schwager '‘07 finished second and Jackie Kelly ‘'08 came in seventh. In the steeplechase, an event clearly not held during the indoor season, Jackie Skildum ‘'08 finished sixth.

Other athletes with outstanding days included first-year pole-vaulter Amie Fillmore, who posted the highest mark of her career at just over 11 feet.

Kathryn Thompson, another first-year who joined the team after basketball season, placed sixth in the 100-meter hurdles and fifth in the 400-meter hurdles.

Daymont also noted that many other athletes offered strong efforts. “"Beyond these placers we had other athletes that ran, jumped and threw their best ever times and distances,”" she said. “"Each kid has a chance to excel and to better their previous best, and several young Oles did just that.

"“Overall, it was a great meet."”

Next Saturday St. Olaf will compete at the Macalester Invitational in St. Paul.

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