Panther Track Heads To Big Blue Classic
MILWAUKEE, Wis. (April 2, 2009) - For its second weekend of the 2009 outdoor season, the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee women's track and field team will head to the Big Blue Classic this weekend. The meet, hosted by Eastern Illinois, kicks off Thursday with the multi-events and runs through Saturday.
Two Panthers will forgo the meet in Charleston, Ill., for the warm Gainesville, Fla., climate and the Florida Relays. Senior Holly Nearman and junior Kelsey Conrad will head to Florida alongside some men's athletes for the Friday/Saturday meet.
Both Nearman and Conrad have had big weeks for Milwaukee. Nearman started her senior outdoor campaign with a school-record run at the Raleigh Relays last weekend. She broke her own record in the 5000m with her time of 16:42.51 eclipsed her previous standard by over five seconds. She was then named the Horizon League Track Athlete of the Week. Her time is also 12th in the nation in the event.
Conrad was rewarded for a standout indoor season as she was named the Horizon League Indoor Athlete of the Year. During the indoor season, she broke school records in the 200m and 400m and with the distance medley relay. She also won league titles in the 60m, 200m (in league-record time) and the distance medley relay, while earning all-league second-team honors in the 4x400m relay.
Nearman was not the only Panther to get her outdoor season started in style. Senior Danielle Magargee and junior Abbie Zaspel also ran at the Raleigh Relays. Magargee won her section of the 5000m in 17:56.96, more than 15 seconds better than second place. Zaspel ran in yet another section of the 5000m, crossing the line in 17:42.33 to crack UWM's all-time top 10 in the event at No. 10.
Not everyone ran in Raleigh, as sophomore Angie Kaufmann led the rest of the squad at the Spring Classic in Carbondale, Ill. Milwaukee took fourth place, with Kaufmann netting the team's lone first-place showing. She ran a personal-best time of 57.60 for the victory. The Panthers also had runners up in four other events, including junior Reigna Pierce (long jump), sophomore Chelsea Von Ruden (high jump), freshman Katie Duchow (100m) and the 4x100m relay.
Next weekend sees UWM competing in its own backyard, as it travels across town for the Marquette Dual Meet. The Panthers and Golden Eagles will meet April 10th in Milwaukee's first straight dual meet since the 1997 indoor season.