USF’s women’s indoor track and field team had another good showing at Saturday’s Michigan Invitational in Ann Arbor, Mich., as another school record was broken and eight Bulls eclipsed personal bests in their respective events.
The team totals were not calculated for the Bulls’ second consecutive meet, but USF coach Greg Thiel got a good indication of how his team stacks up against the likes of defending national champion Michigan and several other track and field powers.
“I think we stack up real well,” Thiel said. “(Michigan) won some events, and we won some events and had others place very well, so when you start totaling up the points, we probably came pretty close.”
Junior pole-vaulter Kristina West broke the school record by clearing 11 feet, 6-1/4 inches. It is the third school record to fall in the Bulls first two meets this season.
“Kristina and Betsy Matson have been getting so close every time,” Thiel said. “(Kristina) just did a good job that day.”
The 4×400 relay team of Bente General, Amber Delpino, Karoline Hagen and Alexis McGaffagan were three one-hundredths of a second short of breaking their own school records en route to a first-place finish.
Their time (3:45.78) in the second meet of the season is only a few seconds off the provisional qualifying time (3:41.20) for the NCAA Championships, leaving Thiel optimistic his group can qualify and break the school record in the process.
“I think they’ll hammer (the school) record because they’re capable of running quite a bit faster,” Thiel said. “I absolutely think they can run the provisional (qualifying) time, and I think it’s something they can shoot for.”
Other top finishers for the Bulls were General, second-place in the 800-meter run, Christa Benton, third in the 3,000-meter run, and Cori Kill, fourth in the 1-mile run.
“This group is definitely focused to come out and work hard and compete,” Thiel said. “It’s early in the season, but these kids come to compete and that’s half the battle.”
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