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Women's Track and Field Tallies Nine Top Finishes at UConn Invitational

April 5, 2014

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STORRS, Conn. - The University of Connecticut women's track and field program finished third in a close meet with UMass Amherst, Rhode Island and Boston College at the George J. Sherman Family Sports Complex on Saturday.  UConn finished with nine first place finishes on the day, three of which came courtesy of big performances from Saija Bikanova.

Bikanova accounted for 29 of UConn's points in individual events and helped grab another nine as the anchor leg on the top-finishing 4x400 meter relay team. She captured the high jump with a leap of 1.668M (5-06.00), the shot put with a heave of 12.94m (42-05.50). Bikanova also added a bronze medal to her day with a time of 14.71 in the 100 meter hurdles behind Chantal Scott's second place (14.48) effort. The junior also placed seventh in the javelin before locking up first place for the 4x400m relay with teammates Tiffany Daley, Nyanka Joseph and Deysha Smith-Jenkins.

Smith-Jenkins also had herself a day on Saturday, winning the 200m dash in 24.14 and finishing as the second runner but first collegiate athlete in the 100m dash with a time of 11.79 seconds. Former UConn great Trisha-Ann Hawthorne claimed first in 11.34. Her efforts helped Connecticut sweep both relay events, running the third leg on the winning 4x100 meter team with Chantal Scott, Taylor Anderson and Nyanka Joseph. The quartet posted a time of 47.01 to lock up first place. She concluded the day by anchoring the 4x400m team to a gold medal in 3:51.12.

Four other Huskies supplied UConn's first place finishes on the day. Nyanka Joseph crossed the finish line first in the 400m run with a 55.72 effort. Melodee Riley leapt for first in the triple jump with a distance of 12.10m (39-08.50). Senior Brittany Power followed for the one-two finish with a 11.34m (37-02.50) showing. Megan Chapman was the victor in the discus throw with a toss of 43.28m (142-00) as the lone UConn representative in the event.

The Huskies dominated the 3,000 meter run, sweeping the top five finishes and grabbing seven of the top ten results.  Emily Durgin paced the effort with a time of 9:44.99 to capture first place. Lauren Sara followed in second in 9:46.53, with Brigitte Mania rounding out the top three in a time of 9:59.44. Abby Mace and Laura Williamson took fourth and fifth place in 10:09.74 and 10:12.69, respectively. Lisa Zimmer and Terra Briody filled in eighth and ninth place.

Other top UConn efforts included third place finishes by Tiffany Daley in the 200m and Taylor Anderson in the 100m. Daley raced to a 25.30 finish to reach the podium and Anderson registered a time of 12.12 for the third place result. Paris Taft also concluded the 400m run in third with a 56.56 effort.

UConn honored its five seniors competing in their final home meets at Connecticut