Jan. 12, 2013
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. - For the second straight day, Tulane's indoor track and field team posted solid numbers at the Birmingham Crossplex - this time in the Crimson Tide Indoor Opener.
Facing the likes of Alabama, Auburn, Florida, Florida State and LSU in a meet this early in the season could be intimidating to some teams. However, Tulane stepped up to the challenge, and performed exquisitely.
"We were really excited to be able to compete in a meet that had so many strong teams from both the Southeastern Conference and the ACC," stated Tulane track and field head coach Eric Peterson. "We are seeing some good, early season performances from a lot of our athletes."
In the high jump, junior Melanie Mainor tied her career high of 1.65 meters (5' 5"), good enough for a 12th place finish. On the season, Mainor is the only athlete to compete in the high jump at separate events for Tulane. She cleared the same height at the Panther Ice Breaker in early December and at the Husker Invitational in February of last year.
"She cleared her second bar during her third attempt, which showed great determination," said Peterson. "I know we are really excited about watching her develop and continue to improve."
Tulane entered two teams in the 4 x 400 meter relay, and the squad composed of Hilary Woods, Tiffanie Smith, Jessica Adamson and Kayla Quincy finished in seventh place. Their time of 3:48.44 bettered Tulane's season high in the event by nearly ten seconds.
"That was a solid, early season performance for us," stated coach Peterson. "If you go back and look at the time that we produced at this meet a year ago, I think it's significantly better."
Sophomore Estefany Cruz led the Green Wave in the triple jump, posting a new personal season high of 12.39 meters (40' 7¾"), which gave her a fourth place finish. Junior Briana Santiago crushed her personal best in the triple jump by jumping 12.07 meters (39' 7¼"). The Gulf Breeze, Fla. native placed sixth in today's competition.
"With Tamika (Brazzel) yesterday hitting 12.51 meters (41' 0½"), and Briana hitting her personal best today, we are developing some significant depth at the triple jump as we prepare for the Conference USA competition," added Peterson.
Sophomore Merritt Van Meter followed up her first place finish in the pole vault at the Panther Ice Breaker with another first place finish today by clearing 3.95 meters (12' 11½") - just five centimeters short of the school record she set in December. In only two meets as a Greenie, the Metairie, La. native has two first place finishes. Sophomore Joanna Lapucha notched a new season high, and sophomore Jessica Knierim posted a new career high by both clearing 3.55m (11' 7¾").
Sophomore Kelci Lyons narrowly missed surpassing her career high in the 800-meter run after finishing in 2:19.39. She finished the event in sixth place, followed by fellow Green Wave sophomore Tiffany Kenney, who finished in 11th place with a time of 2:24.89.
Next week, the Green Wave will travel to Albuquerque, N.M. to compete in the Cherry & Silver Invitational, hosted by the University of New Mexico.
You can follow the Tulane track and field programs on Twitter (@GreenWaveTkFld) or on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/TulaneXCTF.
RESULTS FOR CRIMSON TIDE OPENER
Women's 200m Dash
11. Lilla McMillan, 24.94
Women's 800m Run
6. Kelci Lyons, 2:19.39
11. Tiffany Kenney, 2:24.89
Women's 4 x 400m Relay
7. Tulane A (Woods, T. Smith, Adamson, Quincy), 3:48.44
17. Tulane B (Banks, Kreutzberg, Ohlson, Manogue), 4:04.70
Women's High Jump
12. Melanie Mainor, 1.65m (5' 5")
Women's Pole Vault
1. Merritt Van Meter, 3.95m (12' 11½")
8. Joanna Lapucha, 3.55m (11' 7¾")
12. Jessica Knierim, 3.55m (11' 7¾")
Women's Long Jump
t-12. Tamika Brazzel, 5.59m (18' 4¼")
22. Dana Ohlson, 5.07m (16' 7¾")
25. Tiffany Kenney, 5.01m (16' 5¼")
Women's Triple Jump
4. Estefany Cruz, 12.39m (40' 7¾")
6. Briana Santiago, 12.07m (39' 7¼")