The Gustavus Adolphus College women’s indoor track and field team will travel to Moorhead, Minn. to compete in the Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Indoor Track and Field Championships March 3-5. The conference meet will take place at the Olsum Forum, which is located on the campus of Concordia College. Gustavus will be in search of its first indoor conference title in the program’s 20-year history after placing second the past three seasons.
The Gusties return three all-conference runners from last year’s squad that placed second at the indoor conference meet. Senior Ali Cordie earned all-conference honors by winning the 600-meter race at the indoor championships. Cordie enters this year’s meet with a season best time of 1:38.85, which makes her the top seed in the 600-meter dash. Sophomore teammate Krista Kruse is seeded seventh in the event with a time of 1:40.32.
Juniors Ashley Cronen and Blythe Bittman earned all-conference honors at last year’s conference meet as members of the 800-meter relay. Individually, Bittman is a top ten seed in the 55-meter dash, 200-meter dash, and the pentathlon. Bittman’s season best time in the 55-meter dash is 7.58, which ranks her seventh in the conference. The junior is seeded fifth in the 200-meter dash with a time of 26.71 and is seeded fourth in the pentathlon with a season best score of 2790.
Cronen ranks in the top ten of two events heading into the conference meet. The junior is ranked second in the 400-meter dash with a time of 59.84 and sixth in the 200-meter dash with a time of 26.72.
Distance runners junior Kourtney Joyce and senior Tasha Pike are seeded in the top ten of two events. Joyce is seeded third in the 3,000-meter run with a time of 10:38.99, while Pike is seeded tenth in the event with a time of 10:50.51. The duo is ranked fourth and fifth in the 5,000-meter run. Joyce is ranked fourth with a time of 18:22.60, while Pike is ranked fifth with a time of 18:30.89.
Gustavus should secure some valuable points in the jumping events. In the pole vault, Gustavus has four athletes in the top ten. First-years Alicia Blomquist and Shanna Dawson are tied for the top spot in the event with a NCAA provisional height of 11′ 2.5″. Senior Kristi Schneider is ranked second in the pole vault, clearing a height of 11′. Sophomore Janna Castellano has a season best of 9′ 10.75″ to place her eighth overall heading into the conference meet.
In the long jump, Dawson is ranked fourth with a distance of 17′ 4.75″. In the triple jump, Gustavus holds the sixth and seventh position heading into the meet. Dawson is ranked sixth with a distance of 35′ 2.5″ and first-year Sari Lindeman is ranked seventh with a distance of 34′ 10.25″. In the high jump, Dawson and senior Michelle Steadman are ranked seventh both clearing a height of 5′ 0.24″ for their season best.
The conference meet begins on Thursday, March 3 with the men’s heptathlon and women’s pentathlon. The running and field events will begin on Friday, March 4 and conclude on Saturday, March 4. The complete schedule of events can be found at the 2005 MIAC Indoor Track and Field Championships Website.