By: Alice Coughlin
The Lady Vikings competed at City Track in Rome, Ga. at the Shorter Relays. Other teams in attendance were Shorter University, Bryan College, Chattahoochee Tech and Team Endurance. Twelve Lady Vikings competed in five different events during the two-day meet. Many of the women competed in events that they were unfamiliar with or events that were not necessarily their "specialty race."
The first Lady Viking to compete was all-star athlete and senior Keri McGinnis. McGinnis raced the 200 meters for her first time in 28.52 for a 15th place finish.
The next event for the women was the 1500 meters. Senior Sara Walcott was first from the team, but second in the race in a time of 5:04.47. This time is a personal record for Walcott. Next from the team was Keri McGinnis who finished in 7th place in a time of 5:20.98. This was McGinnis' first time racing the 1500. Next from the team was freshman Nicole Fredette who ran a personal record of 5:24.31 for 9th place.
Also in the 1500 meters was junior Lauren Nation. Nation raced to a 10th place finish with a personal record of 5:27.58. Following Nation was sophomore Charlotte Collins. Collins raced the 1500 meters in 5:29.36 for 11th place. Freshman Kayla Heflin was next for the team in 17th place with a time of 6:04.56. Freshman Hibah Abuhamdieh was the final Lady Viking in the 1500. Abuhamdieh came in 18th place with at time of 6:05.27 for her second race of the track season.
The Lady Vikings raced in the 5000 meters following the 1500 meters. Senior Casey Norris ran a strong race for a 5th place finish. Norris completed the 5000 meters in 21:22.92. Sophomore Katy Jordan had an incredible personal record of more than 20 seconds for a time of 21:50.10 for 6th place. Senior Ellery Jones raced to 7th place in a time of 22:22.82. Behind Jones was freshman Leslie Stewart. Stewart finished the race in 23:44.04 for 8th place.
The last event for the first day of the meet was the 10,000 meters. Senior Jenn Cook, who prefers the middle distance races, had an astounding initial 10,000 meter race. Cook placed first for the women and completed the challenging race in an impressive 38:21.64.
The only event the Lady Vikings competed in on the second day of the competition was the 4 x 800 meter relay. The women formed three teams for the race. All three teams competed in the same heat, creating a friendly competitive atmosphere. Team C, which consisted of Leslie Stewart, Katy Jordan, Jenn Cook and Charlotte Collins, placed first in the race with a time of 10:52.50. Team A, composed of Keri McGinnis, Lauren Nation and Casey Norris would have finished an unofficial second place with their time of 10:54. However, because McGinnis had to run the first and the fourth leg, they could not officially place as a team. Team B of Hibah Abuhamdieh, Kayla Heflin, Sara Walcott and Nicole Fredette placed fourth in the race in 11:18.04.
The Shorter Relays proved to be a successful meet for the Lady Vikings. There were seven personal records set from the 12 runners who completed their events. The runners had an opportunity to prove their fitness in events that were not necessarily their focus for the season.
When commenting on the results, Coach Paul Deaton said, "Even though many of them raced in events that weren't their focus, their racing will help them further in the season when they are working towards personal records in their favored events."
The Lady Vikings compete again at the Emory Classic on March 30 and 31.