ALLENDALE (2/9) The second day of the Grand Valley State University Big Meet was as exciting as the first for the Cornerstone Women's Track & Field Team. The distance medley and 4 x 400 meter relays started and finished the day with national qualifying marks with season and personal bests scattered between.
Running in the fast heat of the distance medley relay, Julia Contreras and Lyndee Sayers handled the 1200 and 400 meter legs putting the Golden Eagles on pace for a season best. Coming off the 800 meters in to a crowded exchange zone, Julie Oosterhouse got the baton to Jill Louisignau who had to side step one competitor and shove her way past another before finding a clear path. She held on to finish in 12:20.99, nearly two seconds faster than the team ran in January. Cornerstone came through the weekend still second on the NAIA list in the event.
Larissa Hampton improved her season-best in the 400 meters to 59.57, winning her heat and placing 20th out of 81 competitors. Kaitlyn Bronkema took second her heat, running 1:00.88, finishing 39th in the field.
Anita Souza and Katie Walker raced well in the 200 meters. Souza scored a season best 26.03 for second in her heat and 39th of 81 contestants. Walker ran a new best of 26.80 for second in her heat and 40th overall.
Audrey Tremaine's debut in the 800 meters put her eighth on the CU all-time list with a 2:23.52 clocking.
Louisignau equaled her PR in the mile taking eleventh out of 52 in 5:16.36.
The Golden Eagles entered the final event with one more task on their to-do list. After coming up just 38/100th of a second short of the automatic qualifying time in the 4 x 400 meter relay a week earlier, they needed to run 4:00.40 or faster to earn their annual spot at the NAIA Indoor Championships. Lindsay Lipa and Oosterhouse combined for an 800 meter split of 2:00.7, slightly behind. Souza and Hampton more than made up for it, each running 59.1. Cornerstone placed third in their heat and seventh overall in 3:58.80.
The Wolverine-Hoosier Athletic Conference Indoor Championship meet is next on the schedule, Saturday February 16 at 4 p.m. at Trine University in Angola, IN.