The GLIAC has a well-earned reputation for being the toughest track and field conference in all of NCAA Division II. The Hillsdale College women's track team kept up with the elite and turned in a strong showing at this year's conference meet.
The 2014 GLIAC championships were hosted by Hillsdale in its one-year-old Margot V. Biermann Athletic Center this weekend. Hillsdale's women finished in fourth place overall with 59 points.
Once again, Grand Valley State walked away with the championship trophy, scoring a total of 159 points. Ashland took second place, followed by Findlay.
Every event was hotly contested, and NCAA marks and GLIAC records tumbled across the board at the meet.
Two members of Saturday's championship DMR team took home individual conference championships Sunday. Sophomore Emily Oren won the mile run with a time of 4:55.84, good for an NCAA provisional time. She ran an extremely smart race, and made a late surge to overcome Saginaw Valley State's Emily Short, who had a huge lead early on in the race.
Junior Amy Kerst came through with a big win in the 800 meter run, like Oren taking the lead late, and finishing with a time of 2:13.31, which stands as a new Biermann Center record. She edged Grand Valley State's Lisa Galasso by just .14 seconds to gain the first-place medal.
Freshman Allison Duber turned in a fine performance in the 400 meter dash, placing second in 57.36 seconds. She was part of a crowded finish that featured the top three runners separated by just .39 seconds.
The winner and still champions, the Hillsdale College women's track distance medley relay team.
The talented Charger foursome of Emily Oren, Jessica Hurley. Amy Kerst and Kristina Galat turned in a very successful defense of its 2013 distance medley relay championship by doing it again Saturday afternoon at the first day of the 2014 GLIAC Indoor Track & Field Championships, being hosted by Hillsdale College at the Margot V. Biermann Center.
Although this foursome isn't identical to last year's, with the talented Hurley joining the group this year, they turned in one of the best performances of the night with a winning time of 11:47.50, which is one second off the school record and currently the second-fastest time in all of NCAA Division II.
Oren got the team off to an excellent startm with Hurley keeping up with more experienced runners. Kerst stayed in contention, and Galat ran a breathtaking final lap to overtake the teams from Ferris State and Grand Valley State to win the championship.
The Charger women are tied for fourth place through six events with 15 points as a team. The action resumes Sunday morning.