April 27, 2013
WHITEWATER, Wis. - The Northern Illinois track & field team finished their regular season Saturday with several Huskies competing at the UW-Whitewater Alternative Meet.
In their final tuneup before the Mid-American Conference Championships, NIU captured nine top five finishes and an event title in the 4x400 relay.
"Today was a great opportunity for our group to complete their regular season on a positive note and to improve their chances of moving on to the MAC Championships," said NIU assistant coach Greg Hipp. "Some of the ladies were able to do just that. I was especially impressed by the efforts of Alexandra Rowe and Natalie Tarter. They led the way for us today."
NIU's best showings came in the field events, where they claimed five top fives. Olivia Herzog strengthened her MAC resume with a pair of third place finishes in the shot put and discus, throwing 132-05 (40.36m) in the discus and reached 42-04.00 (12.90m) in the shot put.
Natalie Tarter set a personal record in the high jump, along with tying the team high in the event. The Batavia, Ill., native leaped 5-03.00 (1.60m) to claim third place. Additionally, Ida Burbulla tied for fourth at 5-01.00 (1.55m).
Rounding out the field highlights was Alex Schad, who jumped 16-07.25 (5.06m) in the long jump to take fifth place.
On the track, Tarter set a personal record in the 100 hurdles with a time of 14.97 for the second-best time of the preliminaries. Fellow multi-athlete Michaela Dwyer also set a PR in the event with a run of 15.33 to post the fourth-best time.
NIU easily won the 4x400 relay by posting a time of 4:09.57. The quartet of Alexandra Rowe, Kristal Pitts, Erica Miller and Lydia Mitchell outdistanced UW-Stevens Point's relay team by almost 14 seconds. Individually, Rowe finished second in the 100 meters with a 12.44 clip, besting her career best by a third of a second. Meanwhile, Miller captured fifth in the 400 meters at 1:00.92.
Claire McAuley paced the distance group by taking third in the 5000 meters with a time of 18:37.36.
The Huskies open their postseason in two weeks when they head to Akron, Ohio, for the MAC Championships. The meet begins Thursday, May 9, and goes through Saturday, May 11.