Women’s track wins 4 individual titles

Mark O'Neil

 The women’s track team competed at the Colonial Relays this past Friday and Saturday, hosted by William & Mary in Williamsburg, Va. 

Junior Ashlyn Llerandi took home first place in the pole vault, clearing 13-1.5 (four meters) to take home the title. Her performance also meant that under the NCAA’s new qualifying standards, Llerandi is now fifth in the east region in the pole vault. Freshman Ariann Neutts won the 1500 meter run with a time of 4:25.36, which now stands as the third best time in the East Region for the event. Neutts grabbed an early lead and never let up, holding off the second and third place finishers from William & Mary. 

Junior Ali Smith put up a dominating performance in the 3000 meter steeplechase, winning the event with a time of 10:34.34, a new meet record. To top it off, this was Smith’s first time running in the event. Her performance earned her fifth place in the East Region in the event as well.

Sophomore Bogdana Mimic put up another strong performance for the ‘Cats, winning the 5000 meters in a time of 10:43. Mimic, an indoor All-American, took control of the race with a mile to go, finishing her final mile in under 5:10. Her time of 16:22.81 beat the rest of the field by 32 seconds and put her in sixth place in the East Region in the event. 

Along with the four individual winners, the rest of the Villanova team put up a collection of strong performances over the two-day event. Sophomore Shericka Ward placed second in the 100 meter hurdles, and her time of 13.63 was good for 11th place in the East Region. Sophomore Julia Arduini took third place in the javelin with a throw of 138-10 (42.33 meters). This performance earned Arduini a spot in the Big East Championship. 

Other strong finishes included freshman Brooke Simpson taking fourth place in the 1500, junior Sarah Morrison finishing fifth in the steeplechase and junior Kristen Mahon taking fifth in the 400 meters. All of these performances earned the runners a spot in the Big East championships.

The 4 x 800 meter relay team, comprised of freshmen Shannon Browne, Simpson, Mimic and Neutts, took second, finishing less than a half-second behind Seton Hall. Freshman Marie Minasi also qualified for the Big East Championships in the triple jump by clearing 11.28 meters.