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Historic Afternoon Sees Women Claim Second at Ivy League Heps

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By Tim O'Dowd

NEW HAVEN, Conn. – It really did come down to the wire for the Dartmouth women’s track & field team Sunday afternoon at the 2014 Ivy League Outdoor Heptagonal Championship hosted by Yale.

Six individuals and one relay group claimed event titles for the Big Green, but in the end it was Harvard winning its first team championship since 1990, edging out second-place Dartmouth, 162 points to 149.

The finish was the best by the women since taking second in 2000. The 149 points demolished the previous program record of 116 set in 1996 also in New Haven.

Despite the heartbreaking finish, there were several historic accomplishments set by members of the Green during the final day of competition at Yale’s Cuyler Field & Dwyer Track.

Senior Abbey D'Agostino won the 5000m (16:34.48) in the first event of the day and would go on to take the title in the 3000m in a meet-record 9:14.57. It was her third straight win in the 3000m and her second time claiming the top spot in the 5000 after also winning her freshman season.

D’Agostino now stands alone as the only woman ever to win the 3000m three times at the Ivy’s outdoor championship meet. Her historic weekend also included a win in the 10,000m on Saturday, making her the first woman in conference history to win the 3K, 5K and 10K in a career, let alone a single weekend as the senior from Topsfield, Massachusetts, did in New Haven over the course of the last two days.

For her efforts in winning her sixth, seventh and eighth respective Ivy League outdoor titles, she was unanimously named the Most Outstanding Female Track Athlete of the Meet for the third straight year. Across all three seasons of competition, D’Agostino now has 16 career Ancient Eight championships to her credit.

It wasn’t just D’Agostino that set new standards of excellence for Dartmouth. Sophomore Kaitlin Whitehorn became the first woman ever to win the 100m and high jump in a career, a feat she accomplished a little more than an hour apart on Sunday afternoon.

Whitehorn went through the high jump field with ease, clearing all five heights on her first attempt, including 5-10.0/1.78m to win the event. Shortly thereafter, she lined up on the starting blocks and won the 100m in 11.74. Sara Kikut would also earn points in the event, finishing sixth (11.95).

After a one-year absence atop the podium, senior Janae Dunchack reclaimed her title in the heptathlon from 2012 with another championship performance this weekend at Yale. Leading after the first day, Dunchack continued to push the competition, winning with 5,228 points, the sixth-highest total in Heps history.

On Sunday, Dunchack won the javelin, finished second in the long jump and claimed fifth in the 800m to secure her sixth multis title between indoor and outdoor seasons.

The string of consecutive champions in the 1500m coming from Dartmouth reached three as sophomore Dana Giordano picked up her first outdoor title by running a 4:20.07 and defeating Harvard’s Molly Renfer (4:21.93) in the final stretch. Giordano won the 3000m indoor Heps crown back in early March as well.

The 4x800 meter relay team took home the top spot for the first time in program history, crossing the line in 8:40.63. The foursome of Meghan Grela, Elizabeth Markowitz, Meggie Donovan and Megan Krumpoch cruised to a three-second win over second-place Harvard to secure the event title for the first time in 37 years of women’s outdoor championship competition.

Krumpoch would also take second place in the 400m hurdles.

The relay teams weren’t done there as the 4x100 group claimed second early in the day with a 45.59, breaking the previous meet record of 45.78. Whitehorn, Sara Kikut, Anna Kikut and Jennifer Meech comprised the group who earned Second-Team All-Ivy League honors in that race. Additionally, the 4x400m team took fourth in the final track event of the day.

Sara Kikut also picked up points and All-Ivy Second-Team recognition in the 200m, taking second in 24.15. Sarah Delozier claimed the same honors in the steeplechase, running the 3000m event in 10:17.84 to earn eight points as well.

Senior Emmaline Berg was another second-place finisher in the shot put as her second throw of the day was measured at 49-10.0/15.19m. Berg was also fifth in the discus (145-6.0/44.36m), one spot back of fourth-place Melissa Dunham (146-1.0/44.52m).

After a vote by the eight coaches
Women's Most Outstanding Track Performer: *Abbey D'Agostino, Dartmouth
Women's Most Outstanding Field Performer: Julia Ratcliffe, Princeton
*-Unanimous selection

Team Standings
1) Harvard 162       
2) Dartmouth  149       
3) Cornell  94       
4) Columbia  88       
5) Princeton  86       
6) Brown  61.50    
7) Penn  46.50    
8) Yale  26 

Abbey D'Agostino and Executive Director of the Ivy League Robin Harris.

Sophomore Kaitlin Whitehorn became the first woman in Ivy history to win both the
100m and high jump in a career, let alone a weekend