Panthers Head To Ohio In Search Of Third-Straight League Crown
MILWAUKEE, Wis. (Feb. 28, 2008) - The University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee women's track and field team heads to northeast Ohio this weekend in search of a third-straight league indoor title at the Horizon League Indoor Track and Field Championships.
The meet, hosted by Youngstown State, will be at Kent State beginning Saturday and ending Sunday.
Milwaukee is coming off a successful showing at its own UWM Panther Tune Up. The Panthers won eight events on their way to a 4-0 record, including three against league foes Valparaiso, UIC and Loyola. Junior Beth Zimmerman led the way by winning the triple and long jump events. She broke her own school record in the triple jump (39-9 ¾) and narrowly missed the long jump mark (19-5 ¼).
Sophomore Kelsey Conrad also won two events, running the second-fastest time in school history in the 60m (7.73) and third-fastest 200m time (25.19).
For her efforts, Zimmerman picked up her second Horizon League Athlete of the Week honor (Jan. 14). The award was the second-straight for the Panthers (Laura Ring, Feb. 18) and fourth this season (Jenni Saarinen, Jan. 28).
Not surprisingly, Zimmerman leads the league in both jumps, while UWM claims the top spot in seven other events. Conrad has the league's fastest 60m and 200m times this season, while Saarinen leads both the high jump (5-5 ¼) and pentathlon (3,652 points), Ring leads the 800m (2:14.81) and sophomore Erin Havener the pole vault (11-11 ¾). The Panthers also have the best 4x400m relay time in the league this season of 3:58.86.
Last season at the league indoor championships, Timeka Walker won both the 60m and 200m events to lead UWM to a second-straight indoor crown. The Panthers edged Youngstown State 170-144 behind individual titles by Havener in the pole vault, Saarinen in the pentathlon and the 4x400m relay.
Milwaukee also had all-league second-teamers as runners-up in Conrad (400m), Ring (800m), Holly Nearman (5000m), Jes Weyandt (pole vault), Kicha Cary (long jump), Amber Curtis (shot put) and Zimmerman (triple jump). Incidentally, Cary led five scorers in the six scoring positions in the long jump.
Walker (graduation) is the lone first or second-team honoree from last season's indoor meet not on the 2008 roster.
After the league meet is over, some Panthers will head to the Alex Wilson Invitational, March 7-8, in hopes of qualifying for the NCAA Championships the following weekend in Fayetteville, Ark.