Walden, Latham impress at Wisconsin Elite Invitational

Jan. 25, 2014

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MADISON, Wis. -- Bolstered by junior Courtney Walden's personal record in the pole vault and Deanna Latham's pair of victories, the Wisconsin women's track and field team built upon its performances from opening weekend at the Wisconsin Elite Invitational at the Camp Randall Memorial Sports Center Saturday afternoon.

Walden continued her strong start to her junior campaign by winning the pole vault for the second time in as many meets this season. She cleared 12 feet, 9 1/2 inches, which topped her previous personal best by more than three inches and stands as the No. 3 mark in school history. Her effort is also tied for sixth-best in the Big Ten this season.

Fellow junior Deanna Latham was equally impressive for UW in winning a pair of events. She claimed the 60 hurdles in 8.40 seconds and the long jump with a mark of 19-8 1/4. She was only 0.06 seconds off the Badgers' school record in the 60 hurdles, which she set on March 9 of last year.

Highly-touted Badgers freshman Georgia Ellenwood competed unattached but finished fourth in the hurdles. Her time of 8.91 was an improvement from her winning mark of 9.11 in last weekend's Badger Indoor Open.

Ellenwood later went on to win the high jump by clearing 5-7 3/4. Another Badgers freshman, Taylor Twedt, finished third in the event by clearing 5-6 1/2.

Junior Kelsey Card, who is redshirting this season, would have set a UW record in shot put yet again had she competed in a Badgers uniform. She recorded a mark of 55-9, just 1 centimeter off her own record set during the 2012 season. Last Friday in the Badger Indoor Open, Card recorded a toss of 56-4 to break the facility record for The Shell but was also not competing in uniform.

Angela Boushea recorded her first victory of the season by winning the weight throw with a toss of 62-11 1/2. Indiana State's Dawnielle Passmore finished second in the event with a toss of 60-11 1/2.

The Badgers were also able to rattle off victories in long distance events. Anne Gregory started things off by winning the 5000 meters in 17:36.51. Grace Meuer finished fourth in 17:52.13, while Ariel Michalek finished fifth in 18:38.13.

A pair of freshmen in Kelsey Hjorth and Jamie Shannon kept things going in the mile. Both runners competed unattached but took the top two spots in the race. Hjorth finished in 5:10.67 while Shannon clocked in at 5:10.85. Northern Illinois' Hannah Savage finished third with a time of 5:14.15.

The Badgers' performance in the 3000 meters was perhaps most impressive of the running events, as UW swept the first three spots and took four of the top seven. Freshman Sarah Disanza and junior Gabi Anzalone competed unattached and finished 1-2 while posting the race's only sub-10-minute times. Disanza finished in 9:34.11 and Anzalone was right behind in 9:35.64, while sophomore Dana Steffen took third with a time of 10:11.80.

Wisconsin also put forth a solid showing in the triple jump. Senior Laura McGinnis took second with her mark of 39-3, which was just one inch away from winner Carmelia Stewart of Indiana State. McGinnis' effort was just a quarter of an inch from matching her indoor personal record.

The Badgers will get back into action next Thursday and Friday at the Bill Bergan Invitational in Ames, Iowa. UW will also send competitors to the Squig Converse Invitational next Friday in Whitewater, Wis.

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