The Cornerstone University Women's Track & Field team enters the 2012-2013 seasons riding the momentum of one of the best years in program history. Returning are six of the nine women who earned NAIA All-America honors in ten events and eight Wolverine-Hoosier Athletic Conference event titles. The Golden Eagles look to improve on their 8th place finish at the NAIA Indoor Championships and the 12th place from NAIA Outdoor Nationals as well as competing at the top of the WHAC.
The 2012 season saw records broken in nearly every sprint event. Anita Souza (Varginha, Brazil) claimed the freshman and school records at 60 meters (7.86) and 200 meters (25.01) indoors, while Larissa Hampton (Fort Wayne, IN) lowered the freshman indoor mark in the 400 meters (58.26) and clocked a 57.89 outdoors. The indoor 4x400 meter record fell to 3:55.31 as CU earned national qualifying marks both indoors and outdoors (3:52.75) in the event. The 4x100 meter relay squad also bettered the NAIA National standard with a 48.30 clocking. The loss of senior captain and relay anchor, Lauren Pierce, while substantial, will be filled by a quartet of talented freshmen. Two-time MHSAA All-State sprinter Kaitlyn Bronkema (McBain MI / McBain, HS) brings a 58.06 400 meter best and could challenge for the Indoor freshman record in that event. Katie Walker (Cadillac, MI/ Cadillac HS), Mary Konsoer-Rose (Ada, MI / Forest Hills Eastern HS) and Reiley Anglin-Hondulas (Cedar Springs, MI / Cedar Springs HS) bring state championship experience while Whitney Grossman (Schaumburg, IL / Schaumburg HS) comes in with 4x400 state meet credentials as well.
The Golden Eagles return a powerful group of distance runners. Along with capturing conference titles in the 600, 800, and 1,000 meters Indoors and the 800, 4x800 and 3,000 meter steeplechase Outdoors, the women experienced success at the National level. Sophomore, Julie Oosterhouse (Byron Center, MI) collected school records in the 600 meters (1:35.87) and 800 meters (2:12.89), earning All-America honors both indoors and outdoors in the later event. She was joined by Julia Contreras (Fowler, MI) in setting the school record in the Distance Medley Relay (12:13.46) and another All-America award placing fourth at the Indoor National Championship. Junior, Jill Louisignau (Beulah, MI) captured the WHAC title in the 3,000 meter steeplechase and placed tenth at Nationals in the event. In the longer events, Contreras enters her senior year with team's best time in the 5,000 meters, 18:24.40 while sophomore CallyAnne Wyma (St. Louis, MI) at 19:02.45 and junior, Mindy Lewis (Vicksburg, MI) at 19:07.30 provide depth. Freshman, Audrey Tremaine, (Jackson, MI / Leslie HS) brings state meet experience and bests of 5:22.97 in the 1600 meters and 12:02.29 in the 3200 meters. Junior Monica Lawrence earned All-America plaques in the 3,000 meter race walk Indoors and the 5,000 meter race walk Outdoors.
Always a bright spot for the Golden Eagles, Anita Souza headlines this group as the school record holder (8.61) and the NAIA Indoor National Runner-up in the 60 meter hurdles. The 2012 South American Under-23 T&F Championship 100 meter hurdle silver medalist is one of the favorites for the 2013 NAIA Indoor 60 meter hurdle title. Since 2002 Cornerstone women have posted NAIA national qualifying times in the 400 hurdles every season. This year three freshmen will work to keep the streak alive. Whitney Grossman clocked 46.8 in the 300 meter hurdles, while Rachel McNay (Lucky, OH / Eastwood HS) and Lyndee Sayers (Edison, OH / Mt. Gilead Christian HS) are less than one second behind.
Brittany Green and Lindsay Lipa wasted little time re-writing the CU freshman and school records in the long jump and triple jump. From the first indoor meet in December, Lipa (Canton, MI) and Green (Monclova, OH) traded the indoor long jump record until Green's 19' ½" WHAC meet record settled the matter for the year. Brittany also earned All-America honors in the event taking 6th at the NAIA Indoor National Meet. Lipa also posted an NAIA qualifying mark in the long jump indoors while breaking the indoor (35'1 ¾") and outdoor (35'8") freshman records in the triple jump. Lindsay also cleared 5' 2 ¼" in the high jump. She'll be joined by Grossman who cleared 5' 2" as a prep and sophomore, Becca Wielfaert (Britton, MI), who has a 5' 1" best.
Freshmen dominated the throwing events in 2012. Haley Russell (Leroy, MI) claimed the indoor school record in the shot put (41' 1.5") and added freshman records in the 20-pound weight throw (47' 2.25") and discus (126' 2"). Classmate Brittany Green added a freshman record in the javelin (103' 6") while finishing the season fourth on the CU all-time list in the shot put with a mark of 38' 5".
Green and Lipa return from remarkably productive freshman seasons in the multi-events. Lipa earned Indoor All-America honors in the pentathlon and improved the freshman record to 3,144 points. Green grabbed an All-America plaque in the heptathlon, setting a freshman record of 4,485 points. The pair looks to earn podium positions in both events this year. New to the multi-events is freshman hurdler, jumper, sprinter Whitney Grossman.