Rock women’s indoor track and field competes at Jim Wuske Invitational

SRU repeated its strong 2023 showing at this year's Mount Union University-hosted event

Published by Aidan Treu, Date: January 31, 2024
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The Rock headed to Mount Union University for the Jim Wuske Invitational last Saturday for their fifth meet of the year.

The White and Green runners are off to another good start with 13 athletes having reached Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC) qualifying marks at the meet after 17 PSAC marks at the Ashland Invitational.

Samantha Gilbert and Katie Plassio led the way at Ashland University, each with one first-place finish at the Jan. 20 meet. The two bested all of their competition in the long jump and 5000-meter run respectively.

Gilbert added a seventh-place finish in the 60-meter dash with a time of 7.83 to her first-place 5.52m long jump. The jumping specialist is a 14-time PSAC Championship qualifier and holds one All-PSAC honor.

Plassio’s success has been a staple of SRU’s track and field recently. The senior’s resume now includes six trips to the PSAC Championship and one All-PSAC honor. Her first-place time was 18:16.72.

The Rock fared the best in the 5000-meter run, triple jump and shot put. In the former two, SRU landed three athletes within the top five. Shot put saw them land four within the top 10 and three in the top six.

Ruthie Hughes and Maddie Grillo followed up Plassio in the 5000 at second and fifth. The triple jump was headlined by Aleks Brozeski, Katie Book and Marissa Seminick in second, third and fifth.

Shot put also saw four different Rock athletes place highly. Sarah Corrie, Olivia Hecjman, Becca Martin and Autumn Stewart finished third, fifth, sixth and tenth.

Last year, the White and Green put forth another strong performance at the Jim Wuske Invitational after 17 PSAC qualifying marks and one NCAA qualifying mark. Cicily Greggs, Baylee Blauser, Brozeski, Corrie, Tiffany Jolayemi and the 4×400 team had first-place finishes at the 2023 meet. The 4×400 team consisted of Layne Miller, Rachel Veneziano, Madison Olsen and Haley Morgan.

At this year’s invite, Gilbert continued to show out, winning two individual events and the 4×400-meter relay. Her individual wins were a 7.76-second 60-meter dash and a 26.03-second 200-meter dash, both PSAC automatic qualifiers.

Lorna Speigle, Miller and Veneziano were her teammates for the relay victory.

Anna Igims, Kendall Grossman and Corrie joined Gilbert with first-place finishes.

Grossman achieved The Rock’s lone NCAA provisional mark at the meet with her 3.80m pole vault. Igims and Corrie logged their first-place finishes in the 5000-meter run and shot put respectively.

Following the Jim Wuske Invitational, Slippery Rock indoor track and field will compete in the Youngstown State University (YSU) Mid-Major Invitational and the SPIRE Indoor Games before their qualifiers head to the PSAC Championships. YSU’s event takes place on Feb. 2 and 3 while the SPIRE Indoor Games occur on Feb. 10.

With plenty of athletes already qualified, SRU has just over two weeks to increase their representation for the state meet.

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