This past weekend the Chicago track and field team swept the competition at the 2018 Phoenix Invitational, winning a combined total of 17 events. With both the men and women’s teams placing first of five teams and beating Concordia University, Aurora University, Illinois Tech, and Knox College, the Maroons are off to a strong start. Following this weekend, the women’s track and field team is now ranked seventh nationally.
“This weekend was very exciting and we saw some great season openers. Having the first meet at home allowed the team to start off with a great dynamic,” said third-year sprinter and hurdler Tali Naibryf. “We are excited to see how the rest of the season will unfold.”
The Maroons placed first in several events, namely the 60-meter hurdles, the 200-meter dash, the 800-meter run, and the mile run. Second-year sprinter and hurdler Robin Peter was one of the several Chicago athletes to win her event, crossing the line in the 60-meter hurdles in just over nine seconds.
“I’m very excited about the team this season,” Peter said. “It was great to see that in both the 60-meter hurdles and 60-meter dash, Chicago athletes made up over half the final heats.” Second-year Alisha Harris also placed first in the 60-meter dash to add to the team’s first-place wins.
First-year sprinter Nike Reid echoed his teammates’ sentiments and spoke on behalf of the men’s team. “Winning the first meet is a great start to the season for both the men and women. Hopefully it will set the attitudes going into the following meets and we can continue winning.”
The victory was a great starting point for the Maroons, but it was just that: a starting point. The Maroons are looking to improve and make a name for themselves, and will not settle with this past weekend’s win.
“Maintaining our team spirit and continuing to support each other in all of the events is a priority,” Naibryf said.
In terms of takeaway, the Maroons are gearing up for the rest of the season, and prepared to compete against more competitive teams in the future.
“I think we’re just looking to transition from our fall preseason training into a more competitive mode,” Peter said. “This weekend was a great victory for us, but we must remain focused moving forward and looking ahead to future meets.”
The Maroons do not have much time to spare, as their season begins to kick-start within the next week. Next Saturday, January 20, the Maroons will travel to Illinois Wesleyan to compete in the I-55 Triangular at 11 a.m.