Saturday, March 11, 2006

Williams at winter track nationals

After a series of disappointing races for those of us who aren't fast enough to do anything better than sit at home and criticize, Caroline Cretti came back and ran an amazing race, so that along with Liz and Mallory, she was the shining light of an otherwise thus far not so stellar racing weekend. Then some other pretty stellar things happened, and Williams came out doing pretty amazingly well.

Let us recap. Yesterday, Dan made it to the finals in the 35-pound weight throw, and then was eighth, good enough for All-American. Awesome! That was great.

Then Mike ran the mile in 4:18, which is seven seconds slower than his best time of under 4:12, so he missed qualifying for the finals. Mike is wicked fast, but he didn't run his best race. Too bad. He wanted to be All-American (don't we all?). Still, he is 11th in the country, which is pretty amazing.

Then Carrie ran the 400 and missed qualifying for the final (but she's more of a 55-meter runner, anyway). Then Katie ran the 55 in 7.30, when if memory serves is 0.09 seconds slower than her school record, which she set this season. Unfortunately, the last person to get into the final ran 7.20, so she would have had to run a new school record just to get in the final. These were some fast runners. (Carrie and Katie are both 10th in the country in their respective events.)

Then was the women's 800. I would have liked to watch these trials. Lissy and Katie (a different Katie) finished 0.14 seconds apart, with Lissy just ahead. In the second heat, two people finished within that 0.14-second gap, keeping Lissy in the final but nudging Katie out. This makes Katie ninth in the country.

That was all last night. Today Dan missed the finals in the shot, finishing 11th in the country (not too shabby).

Then Kristin was third in the high jump! Wow.

Then Caroline was fifth in the triple jump! Wow.

Then Katie (the third one) was 11th in the shot. Pretty impressive.

Then Lissy was seventh in the 800, making her an All-American. Her PR in the event would have put her third, but seventh is excellent all the same. Diligent people will recall that Lissy only beat me by a few seconds in the mile and the 1000 yards at Exeter/Andover in winter track in my senior year, her junior year, of high school.

Then Macharia Yuot, who was second to Neal in the cross country championships in the fall, won the 5000. Neal finished 15 seconds later, about 17 seconds off his PR but good enough for eighth place and All-American status. This after he had been hacking out his lungs with some sort of illness for the past couple of weeks, so that he would run for 15 minutes (i.e., about three miles) and then have a coughing fit.

Then -- THEN -- there was the 5000. She smashed the track record by over a minute, winning her race over 15 seconds -- or about 100 meters -- faster than the next person. Pretty awesome. And Liz and Mallory were not far behind, earning third and sixth places, respectively, only six seconds apart. Wow.

I cannot wait for the DMRs and the 4x400s. I think they have actually occurred already, but I am stuck refreshing the page and waiting for a results link to come up. Want to join me? All of the results are here.

This, by the way, puts Williams in second place in the team scores with 31 points, behind Wisconsin Oshkosh with 40 and ahead of City College of NY with 27.

UPDATE (9:10 PM)

Less than an hour after running the NCAA Division III year's best time, Caroline anchored the DMR, which came in fifth, less than five seconds behind the winning team. Think what they could have done if she and Lissy hadn't already run All-American races already today?

But before that, take a look at this absolutely crazy race. Mike Davitian anchors the men's DMR, finishing seventh in 10:14.07. The tenth-place team was only 0.11 seconds back, meaning that four guys were leaning over the line within 0.11 seconds of each other, all trying to cross the line first. Or rather, since tenth place was last, they were all trying desperately to not be last, and Williams won the effort. Awesome.

This puts the Williams women at 35, five points now behind the leader, still at 40. Williams women were hoping for a top-five finish, and it looks like they'll probably get it. Pretty impressive when they only sent 12 women, and when the 13th woman who qualified, the one who earns the most points for the team, had to stay home with an injury. Pretty impressive, indeed. I look forward to the 4x400.

Update (9:30 PM):

I am way more excited about this than is probably necessary. So it goes.

The women were sixth in the 4x400, averaging under 59 seconds. The men were seventh, averaging just over 50 seconds. Thus, the women won second place at Nationals this year, with 38 points, second to Wisconsin Oshkosh with 44 points.

This year's All-Americans, then: Dan, Caroline, Kristin, Lissy, Neal, Caroline (the second one), Liz, Mallory, Bill, George, Chris, Mike, Lissy (twice over), Katie, Katie (the second one), Caroline (twice over), Deividas, Tyler, John, Alex, Katie (twice over), Carrie, Veronica, Heather.

Pretty good. And if that's not all, Coach White is Coach of the Year.

(Note that I am not using last names, out of deference search engines.)

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