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Women’s Outdoor Track and Field Finishes Third at April Fools Invite

Junior All-OAC thrower Brooke Buckhannon was BW's lone event winner as she won the discus throw at the April Fools Invitational
Junior All-OAC thrower Brooke Buckhannon was BW's lone event winner as she won the discus throw at the April Fools Invitational

WESTERVILLE, Ohio – The Baldwin Wallace University women's outdoor track and field teams finished third at the April Fools Invitational, hosted by Otterbein University inside Memorial Stadium.

BW placed third of 16 teams with a total of 88 points. Host Otterbein won its own meet with 159 points.

Senior All-Ohio Athletic Conference sprinter Grace Nemeth (Medina) broke an April Fools Invitational meet record in the 100-meter dash preliminaries, where she placed second in 12.58 seconds. The senior also placed fourth in the 200-meter dash when she crossed the finish line in 26.45 seconds.

After posting the second-best time of 15.29 seconds in the 100-meter hurdle preliminaries, freshman All-OAC hurdler Amanda Milo (Akron/Cuyahoga Valley Christian Academy) finished as the runner-up in the finals in a career-best time of 14.97 seconds career best, which ranks 10th in Division III at the time of the meet. Junior All-OAC and Academic All-OAC distance runner Katie Fowler (Mount Vernon) also had a top-three finish as she took third in the 800-meter run in 2:25.37.

Both the 4x100-meter and 4x400-meter relay teams had third-place finishes at the meet as well. The 4x100 quad of Milo, Nemeth, freshman sprinter Heather Guiley (Louisville) and freshman sprinter Maddy Neitzel (Brunswick) ran a time of 49.60 seconds, which is the 21st-fastest time in the country. Meanwhile, the 4x400 team of freshman All-OAC distance runner Natalie Vinci (Canton/St. Thomas Aquinas), Fowler, Milo and sophomore distance runner Molina Otte (Omaha, Neb./Millard West) had a season-best time of 4:12.65

In the field, junior All-OAC and Academic All-OAC thrower Brooke Buckhannon (Collins/Western Reserve) won the discus throw with a mark of 128 feet, 6 inches. She also had a pair of runner-up finishes with a season-best 152'8" in the hammer throw, which ranks 11th at time of meet, and 39'9.75" in the shot put. Freshman thrower Alexzandria Strawbridge (Titusville, Pa./Oil City) took third in the javelin throw with a toss of 95'0".

On Friday, three Yellow Jacket distance runners competed in the Washington University in St. Louis (Mo.) Distance Carnival. Junior two-time All-American distance runner Kelly Brennan (Akron/Walsh Jesuit) posted the fourth-fastest time in NCAA Division III, 17:33.56, to finish ninth in the 5,000-meter run. Freshman distance runner Alyssa Laughner (Howard, Pa./Central Mountain) and junior All-OAC and Academic All-OAC distance runner Bella Pendola (Warsaw/River View) each recorded national top-15 times in the 10,000-meter run. In her first collegiate 10k event, Laughner ran a time of 37:46.53 to place 13th overall and sit eighth nationally while Pendola finished 19th in 37:57.80, which currently puts her 12th in Division III.

BW returns to action on Saturday, April 6, when the Yellow Jackets compete in the John Homon Open, hosted by the University of Mount Union inside Mount Union Stadium.