The women’s track team has been competing in invitational meets since the start of its spring season in early March. But with only one week of classes left, the Elis are just now beginning to face Ivy League rivals.
In one of only two home meets, the Bulldogs dominated Princeton and Penn to win 11 of 19 events. Yale finished with 85 points compared to 63 for the Quakers and 55 for the Tigers. At the DeWitt Cuyler Complex, early rain gave way to clear skies as the team reunited after splitting up to participate in the Texas Relays in Austin, Texas, and the Sam Howell Invitational in Princeton, N.J., last weekend.
Joslyn Woodard ’06, who competed in the 100-meter dash and the long jump in Austin, won both of those events with personal bests. She ran the 100 in 12.07 seconds and leapt 6.00 meters in the long jump, in addition to winning the 200-meter dash with a time of 24.48 seconds.
Woodard qualified for ECACs in all three events and also helped the 4 x 100- and 4 x 400-meter relay teams pick up wins en route to the Eli victory.
Although Woodard could have focused on her personal achievements, she said the accomplishments of the team as a whole were particularly noteworthy, especially given how the season had gone so far.
“We knew we had trouble raising the bar and believing we could do things as a team in the past,” she said. “It was amazing to watch my teammates push themselves. I told them this was the memory that I would have of Yale Track.”
In other races, Katherine Dlesk ’07 missed the ECAC qualifying time by .13 seconds, and won the 400-meter hurdles with a time of 1:02.77. Lindsay Donaldson’s ’08 time of 4:25.63 in the 1500-meter run qualified her for ECACs as she finished just over one second ahead of Princeton’s Cack Ferrell, who has become one of Donaldson’s main competitors in the Ivies.
The Bulldogs were also successful in the field events. Captain Molly Lederman ’06 won the pole vault and Dionna Thomas ’06 took first in the triple jump by more than half a meter.
“It went a little better than I had expected,” Lederman said. “Going in we knew we had the potential to win but that’s never a given. Overall we were very competitive and competitive in a way that was very effective. It wasn’t just a few people here and there scoring the points — a lot of people filled in the gaps to get the points that we needed to beat both Penn and Princeton.”
Erica Davis ’07, competing in her first Ivy League meet in nearly a year after playing basketball during the winter season, was a points leader for the Bulldogs. She won the discus with a throw of 44.93 meters and took second and third place in the hammer throw and shot put, respectively.
Margo Angelopoulos ’06, who placed second in the shot put and third in the hammer throw, said she was proud that she earned points for her team even though she felt she did not have her best day.
“I think we are feeling really great,” Angelopoulos said. “We really put it together this weekend. Everyone put in excellent performances and excellent efforts. We dominated all across the board and we got a good result.”
With three weeks to go before the league championship Heptagonals, the Elis are continuing to work hard and prepare. One important step will be this coming weekend, when the Bulldogs will face Harvard in Cambridge, Mass., this Saturday. If they can use the momentum they built up this weekend, they have the potential to dominate the Crimson as well.