Coming off a fourth-place finish at the UAA Conference Championships in Pittsburgh last weekend, women’s track and field now heads to Madison, WI, where it will compete in the Wisconsin Twilight meet.
In contrast to the last several meets, fourth-year high jumper Paige Peltzer will be the Maroons’ only female representative this weekend. The rest of the women’s team will take the week off to recover from last week’s conference championship. Peltzer will be joined by fourth-years Nick Rockwell and Daniel Heck on the men’s side.
“It’s really in preparation for Nationals right now,” Peltzer said. “I’m just trying to get more high performances under my belt.”
While the South Siders will certainly bring less of a team presence to Madison, there will still be pressure on Peltzer to perform well.
“I’m just focused on myself. I’m going to try to stay relaxed, though,” Peltzer said. “And that kind of makes it more challenging when I’m the only one performing.”
Peltzer is currently ranked second in the conference (1.67m), but will be hoping to solidify her national ranking—she is tied for 13th—in an effort to qualify for the NCAA D-III Championship meet at the end of the season.
While the team’s usual lineup may be missing, this is not to say that the Maroons have nothing left to work for this season.
“Those of us who aren’t running this weekend will most likely compete at the Chicago Penultimate (at Stagg Field on May 12) and the North Central Last Chance Meet,” said fourth-year captain and distance runner Sonia Khan. “At this point in the season, most people are running for personal bests or trying to qualify for nationals.”
The Maroons will still be working hard to improve as the season nears its end, but athletes stepped away from the conference meet pleased with their performance and with the team’s progress thus far.
“I was really happy with how the team performed as a whole, and I was happy to see our team place in the top eight across all events,” said Adesanya. “I think that this just shows the great level of talent our team has across all events—on the track, in the throwing circle, and jumping onto the mat or into the sand.”
For the coming weekend, however, the focus will be on Peltzer and her bid to qualify to the national tournament later this month. The top 20 athletes in the country will be invited to the NCAA championship, and with three meets to go until then, Peltzer’s national ranking might still need some protecting.
“I’m going to try and jump as high as I can—and if I go, I go; if I don’t, I don’t,” Peltzer said. “So I guess it’s a good incentive for me to keep trying to jump higher.”
The Wisconsin Twilight Meet starts this evening and continues through Saturday.