Central Connecticut women's outdoor track and field distance star, junior Brittany Mendelson kicked off day one of the 2017 Northeast Conference Championships winning the 10,000 meter run in her first time competing in the event in her career. Mendelson, the 2016 NEC 1,500m and 5,000m Champion, cruised across the finish line at 36:39.80, well ahead of Kate Svensen of Sacred Heart who finished in second place in 37:01.72.
The Blue Devils sit in fourth place after Saturday with a cumulative 24 points. Sacred Heart leads with 41 points, followed by RMU (28), Mount (26).
Sophomore Dawn Hubbell added on to Mendelson's 10 points in the 10K with six points of her own after earning the bronze medal with a personal record ECAC qualifying time of 37:13.53. Hubbel crushed her previous top 10,000 meter run time of 41:09.51 set at the 2016 NEC outdoor finals.
Second year McKenna Kilian scored five points for Central in the long jump and finished fourth overall. Kilian leaped a personal best 5.23m (17'2"), edging out her previous top mark set at the 35th Yale Collegiate Indoor Invitational.
In the 1,500 meter preliminary run, freshman Megan Brawner advanced to the finals after taking six place with a time of 4:58.70.
The Blue Devils' 4x800 relay team placed sixth overall snatched three points towards their 24 point total. Brawner, sophomore Madeline Mondo, and freshmen Morgan Ricci and Clara Drozdowski ran a combined 10:04.03 time.
The Blue Devils sent three athletes, junior Melissa Wolliston, senior Sarah Hicks, and freshman Hailey Rospierski to the 100 meter high hurdle finals. Wolliston, the NEC second contender in the 100m hurdles, finished in first place in the prelims clocking in at 14.30s. Hicks and Rospierski went four-five, with times of 14.76s and 14.84s, respectively.
The women's 200 meter dash produced a pair of personal records and one qualifier for the finals at 2:45 p.m. on Sunday. Leading the way was Truman, who ended the prelims in second place at a collegiate fastest 25.16s. Rookie Wilshka Samuel ran a career fastest 25.64s to come in 10th, and classmate, Erica Snape finished just ahead in 9th at 25.63s.
In the 100 meter dash preliminaries, Samuel and Snape both recorded qualifying times. Samuel jetted in at 12.59s to take fourth place and Snape followed in seventh place at 12.64s. Senior Sherise Truman also ran for the Blue Devils, finishing in 12.80s.
Wolliston advanced in her second event of the day in the 400 meter hurdles with the quickest time in the prelims of 1:03.91. Central will see two more athletes, Kilian and sophomore Sierra Nesmith, in the 400H title race tomorrow at 1:45 p.m. Nesmith was the runner-up behind Wolliston with a time of 1:04.75, and Kilian ran a personal best 1:05.55 in sixth.
Hernandez placed 10th overall in the shot put with a throw of 10.97 meters, and sophomore Abrah Toomey threw 10.61 meters good for 12th place.
Day two of the 2017 Northeast Conference Outdoor Track & Field Championships will begin at 12:00 p.m. with the 3,000 meter steeple chase final featuring Mondo who is currently ranked fourth in the NEC. The individual and team awards ceremony will be held at 4:15 p.m.