Women's Track and Field Dents Record Books at Outdoor Opener


WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. - It was the first meet of the outdoor season for the University of Pennsylvania women's track and field team, but most of the Quakers looked to be in mid-season form this weekend at the Wake Forest Open inside Kentner Stadium in Winston-Salem, N.C. Four Quakers moved up or into the school record books and 12 members of the Red and Blue finished in the top 11 of their respective events.

In the final women's event of the night on Friday, sophomore Erin Baird won the 10,000 meters in impressive fashion for the Quakers. Baird was victorious with an ECAC qualifying time in addition to the sixth-fastest finish in school history. Her finish of 37:16.48 was more than a minute faster than any of the other 21 competitors and was the fastest performance by any Quaker in the 10,000 meters since 2004.

The Quakers highlighted the meet's triple jump with two of the top three finishers. Sophomore Catherine Okoukoni was the runner-up in the event with her top jump measuring 11.71 meters (38 feet, 5 inches). Senior Kathryn Gevitz landed in the sand just short of that mark with her best leap of 11.66 meters (38-03.25 ft.) to place third amongst 34 competitors.

In her first collegiate outdoor competition, freshman Davielle Brown has already posted the third-best performance in school history. The Warren, N.J., native placed second in the pole vault as she cleared the bar at 3.65 meters (11-11.75 ft.). The effort matched senior Yelizaveta Lozovatskaya for third all-time in the Penn record books. Lozovatskaya nearly equaled that feat on Friday as she finished fifth with a height of 3.50 meters (11-05.75 ft.).

Senior Anna Aagenes moved up in Penn's all-time record books. She just missed the ECAC qualifying time with her fourth-place finish of 4:31.97 in the 1,500 meters, but the time was a new career best and moved her into seventh-place in the school record books.

Shortly after Aagenes' effort, the 400-meter relay team moved into the record books. The squad ran to a finish of 47.25, finishing fourth in the 24-team event, and completing the fifth-fastest 400-meter relay in school history. The time qualified the Quakers for the ECAC Championships.

Later on Saturday, sophomore Paige Madison also reached the ECAC Championships. She finished fifth in the 400-meter hurdles with her time of 1:01.72, which was less than a half-second from her career-best and the school's second-best mark all-time.

Senior Jamie Massarelli, just two weeks removed from her indoor ECAC championship in the 500 meters, finished third in the 800 meters. Against a field that consisted of 113 runners, Massarelli won her heat and was one of just five to finish under the 2:14.00 mark.

Sophomore Leah Brown tied a career-best with her time of 12.10 in the 100-meter dash. She was fifth in the preliminaries, but did not run in the finals. However, freshman Nony Onyeador also reached the finals and finished 14th with a time of 12.60.

Senior Kelle Hand was seventh in the 3,000 meters with her time of 10:18.74. Freshman Charlotte Pope was ninth in the hammer throw at 42.61 meters (139-09 ft.) and eighth in the discus at 39.01 meters (128-00 ft.). Sophomore Kristen Judge was sixth in the high jump at 1.63 meters (5-04.25 ft.). Freshman Morgan Wheeler was ninth in the javelin at 37.51 meters (123-01 ft.).

Penn returns to the track next week when they head to College Park, Md., for the Maryland Invitational on March 27.