New Balance Invitational Results
NEW YORK CITY, N.Y. - A 27-year-old school record fell in the 4x200-meter relay and that effort joined a slew of impressive individual performances for the University of Pennsylvania women's indoor track and field team at the New Balance Invitational on Friday and Saturday in New York City.
On the track at the historic Armory Track & Field Center, the Quakers burst across the finish line with a new school standard in the 4x200-meter relay. Penn's time of 1:43.41 topped the old record of 1:44.05 - which was set in 1985.
Junior Jillian Hart moved into second-place in the school record book in the pole vault. Only one Quaker in the history of the program has cleared a higher bar than Hart's 3.70 meters (12 feet, 1 1/2 inches). Current assistant coach Sam Crook holds the school record at 3.81 meters (12-06 ft.).
In a competitive meet, the first bar was set at 3.45 meters, but the Neshanic Station, N.J., native cleared it on her first attempt. At the next height, Hart took all three attempts to cleanly pass 3.60 meters and on her third try at 3.70 meters, she vaulted herself past the bar and up the rankings in the school record book. Hart, who improved upon her ECAC qualifying mark, finished in a tie for ninth among the 35 competitors at the meet.
Continuing Penn's success in the field events, the Quakers swept the first two spots in the eastern high jump. Senior Kristen Judge won the event in a jump-off with teammate Annie Holland, but Holland joined Judge in the school record book.
A week ago, Judge moved into sixth-place all-time at Penn with a jump of 1.70 meters (5-07 ft.). She duplicated that feat Saturday morning with just one miss in the process. Meanwhile, Holland matched the upperclassman jump-for-jump and cleared 1.70 meters on her second attempt. Both are eligible for the ECAC Championships with that height.
The Penn record books shifted on the track as well. Senior Victoria Strickland posted the eighth-fastest indoor 800 meters in program history. Strickland owns the No. 2 spot in the school's outdoor record book in this event, but set a personal best inside on Saturday at 2:11.24. It placed her 12th overall in the championship heat.
Also on the track, senior Veronica Salcido finished less than a half-second away from reaching the Penn record book in the 1,000 meters. She finished 30th among 60 runners with a time of 2:56.52. Senior Paige Madison, who ranks second all-time at Penn in the indoor 400 meters (56.03), placed 12th in the event with a season-best time of 56.98.
In the 60 meters, sophomore Gabrielle Piper broke 7.8 seconds for the third time already this season. Of the 105 competitors, she ran to a 12th-place finish of 7.77. Piper also matched her fastest time of the year in the 60-meter hurdles at 8.75 to place 36th among the championship field.
In the 200 meters, senior Leah Brown nearly set a new personal best. She was just five-hundreths of a second of that mark when she placed 30th of the 98 women in the event with a time of 25.40.Next week is Penn's final tune-up for the 2012 Indoor Heptagonal Championships. The Quakers head back to the historic Armory Track & Field Center on Feb. 11 and then take a two-week break before Heps at Cornell's Barton Hall in Ithaca, N.Y.