The Central Connecticut women's track and field team completed day one of the 2014 NEC Indoor Track and Field Championships on Saturday in Landover, MD. Five Blue Devil performances were enough to advance to Sunday's finals.
Senior Shelby Tuttle once again broke her CCSU record (8.90) in the 60m hurdles, earning a chance to compete in tomorrow's finals. Tuttle, who finished second in her heat and third overall, crossed the finish line in 8.88 seconds on her way to qualifying for tomorrow's finals.
Also earning a spot in the 60m hurdle finals was freshman Melissa Wolliston. Wolliston finished just two spots behind Tuttle in their heat and claimed seventh overall with a career-best time of 9.14 seconds. In addition to the top two qualifiers, two other Blue Devils also competed in the event. Both sophomore Alyssa Gonzalez and freshman Sarah Hicks notched new career-best times of 9.27 and 9.58, respectively.
Two-time NEC Rookie of the Week Brittany Mendelson placed second overall in the one mile event Saturday and will advance to Sunday's finals. The freshman, who earned one of her NEC weekly accolades for registering the second-fastest time in the NEC to date, crossed the finish line in 5:18.82.
Gonzalez will be competing twice tomorrow as the second-year Blue Devil also registered a qualifying time in the 200m dash prelims. She raced a career-best time of 25.89, grabbing the last qualifying spot in the event.
The fifth Blue Devil performance to earn a spot in Sunday's finals came from junior Chantelle Deer. Deer finished eighth overall in the 400m dash preliminaries with her time of 1:00.24.
Other notable performances for CCSU include juniors Taylor LePage and Shannon McBride who both finished just one spot out of qualifying territory (ninth) in their events. LePage ran the 800m, crossing the line in 2:22.80 while McBride raced the 3,000m in a career-best time of 10:25.25, shattering her previous best time of 10:37.61.
Several Blue Devils are slated to return to the field tomorrow including the four finalists as well as junior Ronea Saunders, three-time 2014 NEC Field Athlete of the Week. Saunders is looking to defend her 2013 high jump title tomorrow.