Ortiz and McKenzie Highlight Final Day of IIAC Track and Field Championships
May 9, 2015
Day 2 recap
INDIANOLA, Iowa – Sophomore Fabiola Ortiz won the 3000m steeplechase and senior Nickolette McKenzie took home her third Iowa Conference triple jump title as the University of Dubuque women’s track and field team concluded the IIAC Outdoor Championships with a fifth place finish with a school record of 103.25 points.
The Spartans totaled 103.25 points over the three day meet and trailed Loras (109 points), Luther (116.25), Central (147.75), and IIAC Champion, Wartburg (257.50). UD women were aided by seven All-IIAC performances and three individual IIAC champions. UD beat their previous point total of 79 set last year.
Ortiz set the tone early after winning the first running event of the day, the 3000m steeplechase, in dramatic fashion. The sophomore battled with Central’s McKinney down the stretch and outleaned her at the line by 0.2 seconds and remain undefeated in three steeplechase races this season. Ortiz’s time of 11:29.86 reset her own school record by nearly five seconds.
Defending her 2015 IIAC Indoor and 2014 IIAC Outdoor Triple Jump Championships was McKenzie, who won the triple jump on her second-to-last leap of 11.23m/36’10.25”. It was her fifth career IIAC Championship between the long jump and triple jump.
Joining McKenzie and Ortiz in the IIAC winner’s circle was Alexis Higgins, who won the high jump on Friday.
Rachael Busjahn added to UD’s list of All-IIAC performers after placing third in the triple jump with a leap of 10.98m/36’0.25”. It was her third individual All-IIAC honor thanks to a third-place showing in the 400m (57.88) at last year’s outdoor championships and a third-place finish in the 400m (59.21) in the 2014 Indoor Championships.
Earning a second place finish and equaling her school record and personal best of 11’7.75”/3.55m in the pole vault was Amanda Sinkler. The freshman secured runner-up honors for the second IIAC Championship in a row after an 11’2.25” second-place vault at 2015 IIAC Indoor Championships. The other Amanda, Amanda Zbilski, tied for fifth with a vault of 2.95m/9’8”.
Spartan javelin school record holder, Amy Tranel, added an All-IIAC performance to her resume after placing third in the javelin with a toss of 34.52m/113’3”. Tranel moved her way up to third on her sixth and final attempt.
Setting personal records left and right was freshman Sydney Sears, who set two personal bests en route to finishing third in the 400m hurdles in a school record of 1:05.11. Sears qualified seventh in the preliminaries with a 1:06.43 and dropped her time by over a second in her first career All-IIAC performance.
A select number of Spartans will have a shot at improving their national ranking in hopes of qualifying for the National Meet with the UW-La Crosse Last Chance meet on May 14 and the North Central Last Chance meet on May 15.