Yeowomen Fall Just Short at NCAC Championships


Courtesy of OC Athletics

Junior Carey Lyons competes in the steeplechase at the con- ference championship meet last weekend. Lyons broke a school and conference record and placed seventh in the na- tion with her time of 10:49.72.

Last weekend, Oberlin hosted the North Coast Athletic Conference Outdoor Track and Field Conference Championships.The men’s team finished fourth in the competition, while the Yeowomen placed second for the sixth year in the row.

The Yeowomen earned 124 points, falling only to Ohio Wesleyan University, who finished with 229 points.The men’s team finished with 61 points as Wabash College took home first place with a total of 282 points.

Although the teams did not finish on top, they were still happy with their performances.

“The conference meet went very well,” Assistant Track and Field Coach Danielle Hunt said. “There were a lot of break-out performances for people across all event areas.”

On the women’s side, sophomore Deirdre Haren competed in the 800–meter race, finishing third overall in the conference with a time of 2 minutes and 19.25 seconds. Haren attributed her success to a “change in mindset toward racing and more intense training.”

There were many more strong performances on the women’s side, including junior Carey Lyons who broke the school and conference record in the steeplechase with a time of 10:49.72, good enough to place her seventh in the nation.

“I focused on just enjoying the experience rather than worrying too much about times or winning or losing,” said Lyons.

The Yeowomen continued to dominate in the 5,000-meter race as seniors Molly Martorella, and Lauren Taylor along with juniors Emma Lehmann and Sarah Jane Kerwin and earned second, sixth, third, and fifth place finishes, respectively.

In the field events the Yeowomen also impressed, with junior Tiffany Henry earning first place in the discus with a toss of 35.77 meters.

First-year Ave Spencer had an impressive showing at her first conference meet, finishing second in the pole vault by clearing 3.20 meters. She attributed her success to “a lot of strength training in order to become stronger and faster” as well as a “ton of technical practices” in order to perfect her technique.

With its impressive performances at the conference and in the meets leading up to it, the Yeowomen had many members already qualified for the NCAA Track and Field Championships.

“With the women’s distance qualifying marks, Oberlin is looking at qualifying the most people in school history to Nationals,” Coach Hunt said.

Although the men finished behind the women comparatively in the standings, they too had impressive individual success.

By a slight margin, sophomore Joshua Urso won the 800 meters with a time of 1:55.06.

“It is very rewarding to win your event after all the time and effort you put into the sport in order to have that as a possibility,” Urso said. “It has been a goal of mine to win a conference title, and it is awesome to be able to cross that off my list.”

In a competitive 1,500–meter race, Senior Jimmy Taylor finished third with a time of 4:00.41, which was a mere two seconds slower than the first place finisher’s time.

Junior Jerry Choi was also successful, setting a new school record in the 400-meter hurdles, crossing the line with a time of 53.71.

“The highlight of the meet was not only defeating the 12th ranked hurdler in the nation, but also placing second and breaking that 24-year-old record,” Choi said.

Across the board, Oberlin’s track and field teams had strong individual success at the conference meet.

“The energy of being on our home track with everyone’s friends, families and professors around was just outstanding and really inspired everyone to compete well,” Coach Hunt said.

While most other spring sports have concluded their seasons, the track and field team is busy trying to qualify more runners for the national meet. The team’s next attempt to do so will be May 9 at Allegheny College.