KEARNEY, Neb.– Sophomore Kristen McGlynn broke a 6-year old Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference Indoor Championship and Cushing Fieldhouse records in the 5,000 meters while junior Indira Spence was the top qualifier in all three of her preliminary races as the Adams State College women’s indoor track and field started their bid for an unprecedented 10th straight conference crown in strong fashion, Friday here on the University of Nebraska-Kearney campus.
The Grizzlies also claimed victory in the distance medley relay for the10th straight year and received third place finishes from Addison LeMaster in the 5,000 meters and Annelise Pradal in the pole vault. They also scored nine points in the weight throw as Katie Kruger and Jenna Bohnen took fourth and fifth, respectively, and qualified multiple runners for the finals in each of the four sprint and hurdling events, setting them up for big potential point scoring efforts when action resumes Saturday at 9 a.m. CST.
With just six events in the books, the Grizzlies have 40 points and stand in third place of very tight team standings. Chadron State leads the way with 44 ½ points while New Mexico Highlands stands third with 40. Western State and the host Lopers are tied for fifth with 36.
McGlynn’s effort was certainly the highlight of the day. She clocked a time of 16 minutes, 50.00 seconds to win by 17.50 seconds over Western State’s Lauren Kleppin. McGlynn, who had broke Zoila Gomez’s school record at the Husky Classic two weeks prior, also broke the conference championship and fieldhouse record of 16:51.51, set in 2005 by Adams State’s Beth Merrick (Lee). McGlynn and Kleppin absolutely ran away from the field as LeMaster more than a minute behind Kleppin while still scoring six big team points for the Grizzlies.
Later, freshman Kelly Lamb, freshman Krystal Thomas, junior Lindsey Grasmick and Cassie Mitchell clocked a time of 12:26.03 to win the distance medley relay by 3.50 seconds over the host Loper squad.
Meanwhile, Spence, who set RMAC Championship records in the 60 and 200-meter dashes and the 60-meter hurdles at last year’s meet, looked strong again in winning her preliminary heats in each event. In the 60-meter dash, she clocked a time of 7.56 seconds, just 0.04 off her 2008 Cushing Fieldhouse record time of 7.52. Spence will be joined in Saturday’s finals by freshman Zenobia Sims and Chelsea Fenderson, who advanced on time in earlier heats with times of 7.78 and 7.81 seconds, respectively.
In the 200 meters, Spence was the top qualifier in 24.96 seconds. Meanwhile, senior teammate Jazmine Ralph, turned in a solid and NCAA provisional qualifying time of 25.56 seconds to win her heat while earning the second seed for Saturday’s final. Fenderson finished 10th overall, just one spot out of the finals, in 26.20 seconds.
The Grizzlies will also have the top two qualifiers in the hurdles as Spence won her heat in 8.64 seconds moments after countrywoman and teammate KayMarie Jones won her heat in 8.75.
Jones also got through to the finals in the 400 meters after winning her heat in 59.62 seconds. She will be the fourth seed in Saturday’s finals and will be joined by Alyssa Guy, who also got through to the finals with a time 1:00.99, the ninth quickest of the preliminaries.
In the field events, Pradal led the way as she cleared 3.53 meters (11 feet, 7 inches) to finish in a 3-way tie for third.
Meanwhile, Kruger recorded a big personal best of 15.52 meters (50’11”) in the weight throw to take five team points. Bohnen scored four with her mark of 15.38 meters (50’ 5 ½”).
The Grizzly men won three of the five events that were completed Friday and scored another 24 points in the weight throw as they hold the Day 1 lead with 60 team points, 24 more than the host Lopers who are in second.