Photo of distance runner and graduate student Lainey Studebaker courtesy of atlantic10.com.
Kate Santangelo | Contributing Writer
At the Atlantic-10 Indoor Track and Field Championships this past weekend, the Women’s Track and Field team placed third overall with 84.5 points, which was the team’s best finish since 2018.
There was an immense amount of talent on the track this weekend for the Flyers. Four athletes placed top three, and seven athletes placed top ten in the conference.
Freshman Chante Clinkscale ran 7.33s in the 60m dash and 24.27s in the 200m dash, dominating the track with a first-place finish in both events.
Clinkscale was named the Most Outstanding Rookie Performer on the Women’s side along with setting a new school and meet record in the 60m dash, an incredible accomplishment for herself and the program.
Clinkscale stated, “It’s a great start to my freshman season but most definitely looking to break more records as the season goes on and more importantly get better every step of the way.”
Her teammate, freshman Kaira Granger, ran 7.62s in the 60m dash placing third in the conference as well as being an asset on the 4×4 relay.
The 1600m relay included junior’s Lauren Santiago and Julia Diloreto, Clinkscale and Granger. Santiago competed in the open 400m dash running a season best of 58.87s, placing 11th.
In the Mile final, graduate student Lainey Studebaker earned first place with a time of 4:48.90s followed by her teammate, sophomore Abby Carter placing seventh with a time of 4:59.75s.
Studebaker also placed second in the 5000M, as well as earning third in the 3000M final. Studebaker was named Most Outstanding Track Performer for the meet.
“It means a lot to me,” Studebaker stated. “So much work went into my final indoor conference championship, not just over this season but over years of training. It felt really good to have that work culminate into such a special weekend of competition. This honor also reflects the amount of points I was able to score, so it feels like a nice recognition of just doing my best to be a good teammate.”
The Flyers had two more athletes place in the 5000M, junior Melissa Weidner received seventh with a time of 17:32.81s, and sophomore Zoe Chappelle placed ninth.
For the field events, senior Taylor Robertson finished third overall in Pole Vault earning all conference honors, missing first place due to her misses at each height.
“I’m extremely proud that I pushed through a few mental blocks this past weekend,” Robertson said. “The entire season I wasn’t clearing over 11’6 and finally decided that it was now or never. I saw those ESPN cameras and put on a show.”
Robertson’s teammate junior Carolyn Bakx finished fifth with a jump of 3.50m and freshman Emilee Pham jumping 2.90m.
Freshman Kelly McCloughan placed tenth overall with the fifth-best all-time mark for Dayton with a jump of 11.27m.
The throwers had an outstanding meet, setting personal bests and dominating the podium. In the weight throw, graduate student Taylor Flight placed first tossing a personal record of 19.07m.
“I knew that it was a big toss, farther than the previous throw. In that throwing area, it was hard to tell how far it went once it was past a certain point,” Flight stated. “Coach Kev was losing his mind though and Coach Ordway ran across the facility in about five seconds to hear the mark. All it takes is one toss, and that was the mark that got me gold.”
Her teammate, junior Hannah Lindenman, finished seventh overall also setting a personal best of 17.21m, and junior Grace Homan threw a personal best of 15.49m finishing 13th.
Homan finished fifth throwing the shot put 13.53m and Flight finished sixth with a throw of 13.48m.
The Women’s Track and Field team will look forward to their outdoor season, which begins March 18 at Miami University.