The Slippery Rock University women’s indoor track team started off the new season over the weekend, competing in the Youngstown State Icebreaker on Friday and the Mike Kowal Multi Meet at Edinboro University on Saturday.
The team met expectations as head coach John Papa put it, saying “they performed pretty well. We have some of our returning athletes are kind of where we thought they were, competing at a very high level.”
The Green and White had 19 individual Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC) qualifying marks and one NCAA provisional mark as well as 11 top-five finishers at the YSU Icebreaker.
Senior runner Kennedy Evans was the only Rock performer to reach the NCAA provisional mark, doing so in the 60-meter hurdles at 8.79 seconds, placing first in the event. Reaching the PSAC qualifying mark behind Evans were senior Jenna Bracken (third place) at a time of 9.05 and junior Sophie Mazza (sixth) at a time of 9.17.
Evans also hit the PSAC mark in the 200-meter with a second-place finish at a time of 25.71 seconds. Qualifying behind her in eighth place with a time of 26.10 seconds was freshman runner Emily Horstman who had an outstanding collegiate debut as she also met the PSAC mark in the 60 meter with a second-place finish at a time of 7.71 seconds.
In the Pole Vault, The Rock’s strongest event of the day, four of the Green and White met the PSAC mark, with Junior Maria Darling and freshman Madeline Marshall tying each other for third place. Behind them were senior Megan Matrisciano in sixth place and sophomore Julia Schuler at 12th place.
Other PSAC qualifiers were junior Aerial Dukes (seventh place) and junior Katie Teed (ninth) in the 400-meter, junior Caitlin Janeda (second) in the 800-meter, senior Melissa Rains (fourth) in the 5,000-meter, sophomore Cheyenne Troutman (10th) in the long jump, junior Anna Frengel (fifth), junior Kelce Yale (ninth), and freshman Abby Way (13th) in the shot put, and finally Yale and Frengel also finished ninth and 14th in the weight throw. Slippery Rock also met the PSAC mark at second place in the 4×400-meter relay.
At the Mike Kowal Multi meet, senior Sabrina Anderson met a PSAC qualifying mark by placing fifth in the high jump at 158 meters and freshman Kadin Hinish finished fourth in the 60-meter hurdle at a time of 9.06 to become the second and final PSAC qualifier of the day.
Hinish was the top finisher for Slippery Rock in her first collegiate pentathlon by placing fifth with 2,725. Another freshman, Alison Jones was seventh with 2,429 points, followed by junior Kaelyn Keane in eighth with 2,402 points and freshman Baileigh Carter in 10th in 2,249 points. Anderson, who suffered an ankle injury, did not compete in all of the events.
The team will return to action on Jan. 20th for the YSU Invitational.
Coach Papa says that “the kids will probably have 4 weeks on their own and that’s a lot of what is going to make or break our team is what the athletes do on their own with the self-discipline issues.”
Papa and the other coaches won’t be there to watch over, but he does have enough confidence in the team to do what they are supposed to do on their own over break as they look to continue the season over a month from now.