March 4, 2012

Marvin a Team-High Second at ECACs

Bulldogs Finish with 20 Points

BOSTON - The Yale women's track and field team traveled to the ECAC Championship meet looking for a little redemption after placing eighth at the Ivy League Heptagonal Championships on Feb. 25-26, and redemption is what they achieved. The Bulldogs compiled 20 points to finish in 14th place out of 50 teams and bested three other Ivy schools, including Heps champion Columbia. Cornell beat out University of Maryland Eastern Shore for the ECAC title by one point, finishing with 55 points to UMES' 54. Princeton was a distant third with 44 points and 2011 champion Connecticut was fourth with 36 points.

Junior Elizabeth Marvin placed the highest of any Bulldog at the meet with a second-place effort in the 3,000-meter run. Marvin posted a huge season-best of 9:42.28, just a second behind Shauna McNiff of Connecticut. Freshman Kira Garry also scored in the event, finishing fourth in 9:45.87. She claimed the lead in her heat early on, and gutted out the win, which enabled her to beat many of the seeded performers in the second heat. Garry's finish was also a season best. Sophomore Liana Epstein was 13th of the 29 finishers in 9:50.96. She was three-hundredths of a second behind 12th-place Emily Liggett of Bucknell.

Junior Nihal Kayali took fourth in the one mile run in 4:49.08. She was one of four Ivy competitors in the nine-deep final; Alexis Mikaelian of Princeton (third- 4:48.45), Jeanne Mack of Harvard (fifth- 4:51.72) and Genna Hartung of Cornell (seventh- 4:53.79) also competed.

"I came into the race hoping to run a faster time than I've been running this season," said Kayali, "but unfortunately, with the way the race played out, I wasn't able to execute that goal. Strategically, I think I ran a smart race but ultimately I wasn't able to stay with the leaders coming into the last kick."

Even still, her time was a season best.

Another junior, Annelies Gamble, was ninth in the final of the 800-meter run. She finished a hard-fought race in 2:11.96, just a step behind Jessica Kendzor of Lehigh in 2:11.51.

The Bulldogs' only field competitor of the meet was sophomore Emily Urciuoli, who took 21st in the pole vault. She cleared 3.60m (11'9.75") to tie with two other athletes on the basis of attempts. Tory Worthen of Princeton, the Ivy champion, took home the ECAC title with a jump of 3.90m (12'9.5").

Full results are available here. The ECAC Championship is the final meet of the indoor season for the Bulldogs.

"Hopefully we can build on these strong performances as we enter the outdoor season," said Kayali, pointing to the rookie Garry's "gutsy" race as a promising indication of what the spring may hold. The Bulldogs will step onto the outdoor track for the first time on Mar. 16-17 at the Anteater Invitational in Irvine, Calif.

Report by Natalie Villa '13, Yale Sports Publicity

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