CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – Building from the momentum set Saturday in the opening day of the Ivy League Heptagonal Indoor Track and Field Championships, every Yale athlete who moved on to the finals from the preliminary round scored for the Bulldogs on Sunday. First year Emma Vasen also showed up to the second day of competition with her best performance of the season to score for the team.
On the final day of competition of one of the most anticipated meets of the season, athletes from across the Ivy League pulled out some of their best performances, spurred on by an enthusiastic crowd and fierce intra-Ivy competition and camaraderie at Harvard's Gordon Indoor Track.
Overall, the Bulldogs finished in eighth with 21 points. Penn ran away with the team competition, scoring 136 points.
Vasen kicked off the day on a high note in the shot put. In her first indoor championship, Vasen finished fourth and improved on her already remarkable lifetime best. She put the first points on the board for the Bulldogs, earning four points with her finish. Her throw of 14.72 sets a new school record by just over two inches.
Vasen's progression as a first-year athlete and the marks she has recorded so early on in her career will make her an athlete to watch in many seasons to come. Her future will be bright as the new school record holder.
In a gutsy performance in the 400-meter run, junior Lillian Enes earned the next points of the day for the Bulldogs. As is typical in the sprint events, the finals were run in two heats. She took the lead in the first heat from the halfway point onward, holding off the other athletes' challenges throughout the entire second lap. In the second heat, only two athletes ran faster than Enes' time of 56.10. She finished third overall, earning six points for Yale.
First year Samantha Friborg improved on her time from the preliminary round in the finals, despite the race being bunched and highly technical for the first 700 meters. Friborg put in a gritty performance, taking the race out from the start with an honest pace and sticking with the pack from start to finish. She crossed the line in 2:09.90, which was good for fifth place overall, just a few seconds off first and less than a second off her season-best time.
Jocelyn Chau rounded out the trio of first-year scorers for the Bulldogs. Chau competed in the 1,000-meter run after having smoothly won her preliminary heat on Saturday. The 1,000-meter event turned out to be one of the deepest fields of the day, with the winner setting an Ivy League record and meet record. Chau held her own against the talented field of competition to finish fourth overall with a time of 2:47.90, a new lifetime best that moves her up the all-time list.
All of the individually scoring athletes will be returning to compete for Yale next year; the future is bright for these individuals. The impact of the first-year athletes on the team is remarkable: coming into a first-ever indoor championship and scoring is quite a feat.
The relays were another group of events the Bulldogs scored in. First-years Chau and Friborg took the track for the third time in the weekend to compete in the distance medley relay, along with Sophie Isom and Kayley DeLay. The team earned two points by finishing in fifth with a time of 11:46.64.
The conclusion of the Ivy League Heptagonal Championship meet on Sunday does not signal the end of the indoor season for the Bulldogs. Those who earned qualifying marks -- a substantial portion of the team -- will return to Boston next weekend to compete in the ECAC Championship.
Complete results can be found here.
Recap by Yale Sports Publicity.