The Emory track and field team started the new year with a first-place finish from the women’s team, while the men’s team finished in sixth place at Emory’s annual Crossplex Invitational in Birmingham, Ala., Jan. 22.
On the women’s side, senior Gabrielle Stravach led the way by setting a meet and personal record in the 3000m with a time of 10:14.93. She also broke a personal record in the 800m, finishing third with a time of 2:17.14. Freshman Carrie McIntyre made another notable finish, winning the 5000m with a time of 18:27.81 in her debut meet.
As strong as the team looked in its first-place performance, freshman Egan Kattenburg believes the team can still improve.
“We tried to make sure everyone was in shape,” Kattenburg said. “This tournament might not be the best marker for how fit everyone is. I think we’ll see faster times for both the long distance and short distance [runners].”
Senior Erica Goldman and sophomore Kaitlyn Leonard led the Eagles in the 400m dash, finishing fourth with a time of 57.99 and sixth with a time of 58.51, respectively.
In the distance medley relays, freshmen Talia Carlson and Lauren Rodriguez, junior Radhika Shah, and sophomore Ileana Zeissner took fourth place with a time of 12:57.22 while the other relay group, composed of freshman Ayla Kazemi, sophomore Nicole Steiner and juniors Kayla O’Shea and Maeve Andrews, finished in sixth place with a time of 13:01.70.
Three key performers starred in the field events. Senior Dara Liss and sophomore Isabel Saridakis tied for third in the pole vault with a mark of 3.10m. Freshman Rebekah Bondi placed second with a long jump distance of 5.12m.
The men’s team dominated the mile run, with three runners finishing in the top five. Senior Max Brown, freshman Jacob Hedgepeth and sophomore Samuel Branson finished second at 4:13.48, third at 4:24.19 and fourth at 4:24.31, respectively.
Seniors Benjamin Rogin and Robert Wilhelm III, sophomore Alex Rand and freshman Liam Fost crossed the finish line fourth in the 4×400 relay with a time of 3:26.67.
The team started preparing for this meet before the start of winter break. Though many runners returned home for the break, staying in shape remained a priority for the team. Some members of the team returned to campus early to train more.
“Early return [meant] our legs were little more tired [than usual],” Kattenburg said. “We put [in] a lot of volume over the last two weeks. I think getting back into a regular schedule and regular mileage [will] have us fresher and more ready.”
Both the women’s and men’s teams will return to the Birmingham Crossplex Jan. 28 to compete in the KMS Invitational.