Kayali Impresses Again
BOSTON – On Friday night, the Yale women's track and field team traveled to Boston to compete in its largest scored meet yet this season. The middle distance athletes headlined the day, with several impressive performances against competitive teams. Overall, the Bulldogs combined for 53 points, which won them eighth place out of 17 squads.
Sophomore Nihal Kayali proved that her outstanding race last Saturday, when she won the 1,000-meter run in 2:50.00 to place herself as the fourth-fastest Bulldog ever, was not a fluke. She tried her hand at the mile run this weekend, and again made the record books. Not only did Kayali's time of 4:47.84 in the mile run placed her in second out of 84 women competing in that event, but it was also the fourth-best by a Yale athlete all-time. In a strange coincidence, this is the exact same position she was in last weekend, when she became the fastest Bulldog in twenty years in the 1,000-meter run.
"For Nihal, that was a big PR," said distance coach Mark Young '68.
"That was an outstanding time for her and she'll only get better."
Many more of Young's athletes turned in strong times as well. In the mile run, sophomore Elizabeth Marvin finished in fifth (4:59.20) and freshman Melissa Chapman placed 12th (5:02.56). It speaks to the team's depth in the middle distance races that all three of the runners wearing Yale blue in that event placed in the top 12. Freshman Sarah Barry placed well in the 1,000-meter run, finishing in 2:56.37 for fifth place. All-American senior Kate Grace was second in the 800-meter run (2:08.80).
In the 500-meter dash, the finish line was a streak of blue as three Bulldogs finished within one second of each other. First was junior Gabriella Kelly (3rd- 1:16.56), followed closely by sophomore Allison Rue (4th- 1:16.85) and sophomore Annelies Gamble (5th- 1:17.38). Their times are just barely off the ECAC mark of 1:16.04. Two of them went on to compete in the 4x400 meter relay, finishing fourth in 4:01.94. The team comprised Kelly, freshman Kate Chockley, Gamble, and sophomore Jenna Poggi.
Yale throwers were represented by senior Stephanie Scaramella. She threw 13.34m in the weight throw (12th place) and put the shot 11.66m (7th place). Scaramella holds positions on Yale's all-time top 10 list in both events.
Many Bulldogs had great showings in the jumps, as well. Freshman Emily Urciuoli placed 7th in the pole vault with 3.35m, which gives her the fourth position on the list of Yale's best leaps. Senior Emily Standish was part of a three-way tie for sixth place at 1.57m. Two more athletes jumped their way onto the Yale record book in the triple jump: freshmen Kristen Proe (6th- 11.4m) and Beata Fiszer (9th- 10.96m).
As the team looks head to the Harvard-Princeton tri-meet (Feb. 12) and Heptagonal Championships (Feb. 26-27), "we're trying to figure out who can do what. We're trying to position ourselves for those meets," said Young.
ECAC qualifiers from the meet are Grace (800-meter run) and Kayali (mile run).
Yale track and field competition will return to Coxe Cage next weekend when the Bulldogs host the Giegengack Invitational.
Report by Natalie Villa '13, Yale Sports Publicity