On Friday, the women’s indoor track and field team proved it is one of the top teams in the region even when not competing at full strength.

The Elis competed at the University of Rhode Island against six other teams including in-state rivals Quinnipiac, the University of Connecticut, and Central Connecticut State University. The Bulldogs placed second with 154 points, well behind the first-place Huskies, who scored 204 points. Host Rhode Island came in third with 136 points.

“I feel that we performed well,” captain Lisa Wygant ’04 said. “The competition level was varied but generally good. Since there were no other Ivy teams in the meet, this was a good meet just to get some races under our belts and focus on individual times and marks.”

Wygant was one of a number of Yale athletes to achieve one of those fine individual marks. She earned second place in the high jump with a leap of 1.70 meters, her college best and good enough to qualify for the ECAC Championship March 6-7.

“I haven’t cleared [that height] since high school,” Wygant said.Ê”I was especially excited to clear that height so early in the season.”

In what has become a pattern, Molly Lederman ’06 and Ashley Nolet ’07 took first and second places respectively in the pole vault.

Lederman is a copy staffer for the Yale Daily News.

Also for the third week in a row, Vanessa Mazandi ’05 earned a victory in a middle distance race. Competing in a slightly longer race than usual, Mazandi won the 1000-meter run and was a member of the Elis’ victorious 4×800 relay team.

“For our mid-distance women, this was a good practice meet to get some conditioning races in, and so many of them ran slightly longer races than they normally do,” Wygant said.

Like last weekend, the Bulldogs had great success in the distance races. Melissa Donais ’06 won the mile with a time of 4:59 and Emily Vince ’06 was victorious in the 3000-meter run. The races were the first collegiate victories for both Donais and Vince.

“That was just a big surprise for me,” Donais said. “I sprained my ankle over break and couldn’t walk on it for a while and I couldn’t run the past couple of races.”

Despite a lack of training and her struggles with her ankle injury, Donais managed to break the 5-minute barrier for only the third time in her running career.

“[It] was an enormous confidence-booster for me,” Donais said.

Vince trailed in the 3000 until the last lap when she passed the leader and pulled away for the victory.

“That was amazing to watch,” Donais said. “She made her move on the last lap and as she raced into the lead I think I saw her crack a smile — she was just so happy and she should be. She’s such a hard worker [and] she definitely deserved that win.”

The Elis’ young sprint corps continued to perform well. Joslyn Woodard ’06 and Katrina Castille ’07 reversed their order of finish from last week, placing second and third respectively in the 55-meter dash. In the longer sprints, Jessica Pall ’07 took fourth in the 500 and Katie Greene ’06 took fifth in the 400.

[ydn-legacy-photo-inline id=”18472″ ]