The women’s track team concluded one chapter of its season and began another one this spring break.
The ECAC Championships signalled the end of the indoor track campaign March 5 and 6 as the team finished ninth out of 48 teams in Boston. The team then traveled to California to compete in the first outdoor meet of the season, taking fifth at the Long Beach Classic March 19.
Another sterling performance by pole vaulter Molly Lederman ’06, who finished second in the event (3.80m), and two top-three finishes by the 4 x 800 and distance medley relay teams were instrumental at the meet in Beantown.
Joslyn Woodard ’06 also contributed to the effort, with a fourth-place finish in the long jump (5.94m), and an eighth place finish in the 200-meter dash (24.63).
Woodard, however, felt the fact that the meet followed the emotional Heptagonal Championships, in which the Elis finished second, and that some members of the team were injured may have kept the team from having better results.
“We didn’t necessarily have a big showing,” Woodard said. “It’s kind of a letdown meet after Heptagonals. A lot of people were injured. People were resting to gear up for the spring season.”
The spring season officially began in Long Beach, Calif. with the Long Beach Classic.
Key players in the team’s fifth-place finish were Lederman, Woodard, and Sarah Mendillo ’07, who placed in the top five in the javelin throw (38.98m).
Middle distance runner Vanessa Everding ’05, who returned to action in California from injury, saw the Long Beach Classic as a chance to experiment with the lineup and to adjust to the outdoor conditions.
Everding also described the important adjustments team members must make to transition from the indoor to outdoor meets.
“You have to have a different mindset [in the outdoor season],” Everding said. “The laps are different and you’re a little scared about going out too fast in the events you haven’t run. You just have to go out there and see what you can do.”
Woodard shared many of the sentiments of her teammate in regard to the shift from the indoor to the outdoor season. However, she said changes were not necessarily a negative thing.
“None of the adjustments are bad,” Woodard said. “Your body feels better and you feel better. You start all over again.”
The Eli squad hopes to build off a solid indoor campaign which saw many underclassmen turn in stellar performances. Perhaps the biggest story was Lindsay Donaldson ’08, who capped off the indoor campaign with a remarkable fourth-place finish in the 3,000-meter run at the NCAA Championships in Arkansas March 13.
With practice sessions increasing to twice a day in the outdoor season, all members of the squad will need to build up their fitness and stamina to challenge for the Ivy crown.
The team travels to Chapel Hill, N.C. this weekend to participate in the Raleigh Relays.
— Yale Daily News