Feb. 7, 2001
WHO: Notre Dame women’s track and field team
WHAT: The University of Windsor Team Challenge
WHERE: Windsor, Ontario
WHEN: Saturday, Feb. 10, 2001
Irish decide to compete in Windsor, Ontario this weekend:
The University of Notre Dame women’s track and field team will send a limited number of competitors to the University of Windsor Team Challenge in Windsor, Ontario, on Saturday, Feb. 10. With the 2001 BIG EAST Indoor Championship (Feb. 17-18) less than two weeks away, this will be the last opportunity for the Irish to qualify or improve their marks and times for any prospective seeds at the BIG EAST meet.
Notre Dame team members making the trip this weekend are Ayesha Boyd, Kristen Dodd, Natalie Hallett, Tameisha King, Kymia Love, Ana Morales, Jill VanWeelden, Jaime Volkmer, Bethany Wilson and Betsy Lazzeri.
The Irish were previously scheduled to compete in the Cannon IV Classic in Indianapolis, Ind., this weekend, but decided to make the trip to Windsor for a one-day meet. The University of Windsor boasts the same type of track on which the Irish will compete at Carrier Dome in Syracuse, NY, for the BIG EAST indoor championship.
Recapping a memorable Meyo Invitational:
The Irish competed in the 14th annual Meyo Invitational last weekend and the meet lived up to its reputation as one of the best events of the national indoor season. Competitors from over 15 teams achieved 36 NCAA championship consideration times and marks during the two-day event.
Junior sprinter Liz Grow (New Braunfels, Texas) highlighted the meet for the Irish women’s team. Grow posted a 53.30 in the 400 meters last weekend, breaking her own school record. Grow has really hit her stride this season. She owns the team’s fastest times in the 60, 200 and 400 meters while also anchoring the 4×400 relay team.
The 53.30 is the fourth-fastest time in the nation this year and should qualify Grow for her for the second NCAA indoor championship meet of her career, scheduled for March 9-10, in Fayetteville, Ark. Grow finished 17th in the preliminaries of the 400 meters at the 1999 NCAA championship meet. She is the defending BIG EAST indoor champion in the 400 meters.
Grow is not the only talent the Irish can boast in the sprint lane. Freshman Ayesha Boyd (Spartanburg, SC) has been steady this season, posting a 7.64 time in the 60 meters and a 25.01 in the 200 meters. Sophomore Kymia Love (Memphis, Tenn.) also has ran well in the 400 meters, posting a season-best time of 55.81 during the Meyo Invitational.
Moving to greater heights in the pole vault week-by-week, sophomore Jaime Volkmer (Kearney, Neb.) has become one of the most consistent performers on the team. Also Notre Dame’s top triple jump threat, Volkmer broke her own school record in the pole vault for the second consecutive week during the Meyo Invitational. Volkmer cleared 12 feet, bettering the mark of 11-10 that she set just two weeks ago vs. Michigan State. Not simply limited to the pole vault, she has posted BIG EAST qualifying marks in the triple jump and high jump this season.
Volkmer has not been standing alone on the runway during the pole vault finals this year. Junior Natalie Hallett (Huntington Beach, Calif.) and freshman Jill VanWeelden (Scottsdale, Ariz.) have finished in the top five of all three pole vault competitions this season. While Volkmer was competing in the high jump in the first meet vs. Ball State and Western Michigan, Hallett and VanWeelden both set the school vault record at 11-4 to finish first and second in the competition.
Sophomore long jump All-American Tameisha King (Mableton, Ga.) has continued to excel in her specialty event, winning all three of her competitions this season. Her 19-6 1/2 effort at the Meyo Invitational is her best long jump mark of the year. King also will run the 60-meter hurdles at the BIG EAST meet this year. She has the top time on the team in the event (8.63).
Leading the Notre Dame women’s distance contingent, sophomore Jenn Handley (Barrie, Ontario) has posted the top mile and 3,000 meter times for the team this season, while senior Chrissy Kuenster (Wheaton, Ill.) has continued her solid showing from the cross country season to the indoor season. Her 5,000 meter time of 17:44.78 is the best on the team this season.