Jan. 27, 2012
MADISON, Wis. -- The Wisconsin women’s track team hits the road for the first time this season as it heads to the Bill Bergan Invitational Saturday in Ames, Iowa.
The Leid Recreational Center includes a 300-meter track, making it one of the fastest tracks in the nation. The Badgers come into the weekend after nabbing their first team win at the Wisconsin Invitational and look to make a repeat performance.
Also traveling to Ames for the competition are Kansas State, Marquette, Missouri, North Dakota, North Dakota State, South Dakota and South Dakota State. The eight-team meet is Wisconsin’s biggest yet this season and offers opportunity for the Badgers to gain experience, especially the newcomers.
Main competition begins Saturday at 9:30 a.m. with the weight throw. Junior Taylor Smith will be competing in her first attached meet of the season following two consecutive school-record performances. Smith broke the Wisconsin records in the weight throw and shot put her first meet of the season, the Badger Track Classic. The next week she went on to shatter the mark for the weight throw again, now holding a record of 69 feet, 8 inches.
Sophomore Abby Lueck will also compete in the weight throw. Lueck’s last week personal-best throw of 61-4 ¾ places her 32nd in the nation and seventh in the Big Ten.
In the shot put, national top-20 contenders Jasmine Boyer and Kelsey Card look to make their mark. Sophomore Boyer leads the Big Ten and ranks No. 13 on the national list with her throw of 52-2 ¾. Card, a freshman, sits just behind at No. 3 in the Big Ten and No. 17 on the national stage.
UW’s three multi-events athletes, Dorcas Akinniyi, Jessica Flax and Deanna Latham, also take the field, competing in 60 hurdles and high jump. The returning Big Ten pentathlon champion, Akinniyi will also be competing in her first attached meet of the season.
Additionally, returning Big Ten champion Monika Jakutyte will make her season debut in the high jump, while senior Jordan Helgren competes in the triple jump.
On the track, freshman Marissa Savitch will compete in the 60 hurdles, hoping to improve her time like she has with each meet this season.
In the 200 meters, junior Natalie Tarter, Savitch, senior Katie Duchow and sophomores Maya Vazquez and Sophie Roth will compete.
The Badgers will also take runners to State College, Pa., for the Penn State National Invitational. UW will compete in the 5000 meters. The meet begins Friday, with the 5000 meters start time estimated at 6:35 p.m. (CT).
Live results can be found on UWBadgers.com.