By | Ian Round
Despite several strong individual finishes, the men’s and women’s track teams placed fourth and fifth, respectively, out of six teams at the Kenyon College Invitation on Feb. 22.
Sam Lagasse ’16 and Jenna Willett ’14 won the men’s and women’s mile runs, while Lauren Bittrich ’16 won the women’s 800-meter race and Neil Campbell ’14 won the men’s 5,000-meter run.
“It was a good meet,” Head Coach Duane Gomez said. “I’m pretty happy with it.”
Following Willett’s lead, Aisha Simon ’15, Tory Bruch ’14 and Kerry Strader ’14 placed third, fourth and fifth in the women’s mile.
“The most impressive event for us was the women’s mile,” Gomez said.
He added that Willett barely looked tired after running the mile in 5:15, beating the second-place runner by more than six seconds.
“It didn’t even hardly faze her,” he said. “To run by herself that fast is really impressive.”
Gomez named Bittrich the women’s track and field team’s Runner of the Week for her performance in the 800-meter race and the 4×400-meter relay.
Lagasse won the 5,000-meter run at the Ohio Wesleyan University Triangular Meet Jan. 17 and at the Fighting Scots Invitational Feb. 1.
“Sam Lagasse is just flying,” Gomez said.
Lizzie Halper ’14 and Abby Arace ’16 placed fourth and fifth in the women’s 5,000-meter. They each bested their personal records by more than 10 seconds. Gomez said he didn’t expect his distance runners to record so many personal records, and attributed the performance to home-field advantage.
“We trained really hard last week. I thought it was gonna be an off week,” he said. “They were all excited about being home. They wanted to do well on their track.”
Both teams will run in the Denison University Last Chance Meet Feb. 28. Kenyon hosts the North Coast Athletic Conference Multi-Event Championships, with the men’s heptathlon March 1-2 and the women’s pentathlon March 2.