Three qualify for NCAA Championship
The Denison women's track & field team will send three athletes to the 2014 NCAA Division III Indoor Championship meet which is set to begin this weekend at the Bob Devaney Sports Center on the campus of the University of Nebraska in Lincoln, Neb. Those three Big Red athletes are seniors Tiffany Davis and Olivia Galano, and sophomore Aedin Brennan.
Brennan qualified for the indoor pentathlon for the second-consecutive year after capturing the North Coast Athletic Conference crown with a conference and school record score of 3,441 points. After her 800-meter time was converted for the banked track, the sophomore's score was bumped up to 3,462 points which moved her into 10th on the Division III national list. Brennan, the 2014 NCAC Field Athlete of the Year, won three of the five events and had two PR performances en route to repeating as conference champion in the pentathlon. Her toss of 37'1.75" in the shot and her 800-meter time of 2:23.50 were both personal bests for Brennan. This weekend will mark the sophomore's third appearance on the national stage, qualifying for both the indoor and outdoor national meet as a freshman. Seven of the 17 athletes in this year's field competed in the 2013 NCAA Division III Pentathlon. The first event of the pentathlon, the 60-meter hurdles, is scheduled to begin at 11:20 a.m. central time on Friday, March 14. After the hurdles, the 17 athletes will compete in the high jump, shot put, long jump and 800-meter run.
Davis is making her third national appearance, but her first for the indoor season. In both 2012 and 2013, the senior competed in the 200-meter dash at the NCAA Outdoor meet. Both years she was seeded 21st and missed out on competing in the finals of the event. Heading into her first indoor national meet, the three-time NCAC Indoor Sprinter of the Year boasts the fourth-best 200-meter dash time in the country. At last weekend's NCAC Championship, Davis ran a conference and school record time of 25.14. Once her time was adjusted for the banked track in Lincoln, the senior sprinter moved from eighth in the national standings to fourth. In addition to qualifying in the 200, Davis also earned a spot in the 60-meter dash following another school and conference record performance at the NCAC Indoor meet. Davis' time of 7.80 in the finals on Saturday moved her into a tie for 16th on the national list, lifting her just above the cut line for the event. The 60-meter prelims will take place on Friday at 3:45 p.m., while the qualifying round of the 200 will start at 5:05 p.m.
Like Brennan and Davis, Galano also secured her berth to nationals at the NCAC Indoor Championship. The senior will be making her second NCAA postseason trip following a strong showing at the NCAA Division III Cross Country Championship last fall. Last Friday at the Mitchell Fieldhouse, Galano earned all-conference track honors for the first time in her career after finishing runner up in the 5,000-meter event. The senior's time of 17:24.59 surpassed the previous school record set by Katie Navarre in 2010 (17:32.44) by almost eight seconds. Following the time conversion, the DU runner moved into 15th nationally which secured her a spot in the 17-athlete field. Galano will be one of nine seniors in the race, and just one of two distance athletes from the NCAC. The NCAC champion in the 5,000, Emma Lehmann of Oberlin, will also compete at nationals in the event. The 5,000-meter run will take place on Friday at 5:50 p.m. central time.