AU Men, Women Begin Kent State Gala On High Note

AU Men, Women Begin Kent State Gala On High Note


It was a relatively small group of Eagles who made their way to the first day of the Kent State Golden Flash Gala on Friday (Dec. 8), but the results Ashland University's men's and women's indoor track and field teams brought back were anything but miniscule.

Senior Marie Hammer, returning after an injury-marred 2016-17 campaign, won the women's pentathlon on Friday, earning a provisional mark for NCAA Division II indoor nationals with 3,468 points. Also in the pentathlon, sophomore Paula Wollenslegel took third and PRed with 3,214 points.

In the women's weight throw, junior Natalie Helenthal, the reigning Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Female Field Athlete of the Week, took second and improved upon her provisional distance at 19.59 meters/64-feet-3¼. That is a new PR by more than a half-meter.

Redshirt freshman Gianna Dipippo was seventh in the women's weight, and improved upon her provisional mark and PRed at 17.37 meters/57-feet-0.

The most movement on the nationals lists in one event on Friday came in the men's weight throw. Sophomore Alex Hill took second at 20.48 meters/67-feet-2¼, then…

- Freshman Brent Fairbanks was third with an improved provisional and PR by nearly a half-meter at 20.14 meters/66-feet-1.

- Sophomore Nick Zak got on the nationals list with a new provisional distance of 19.19 meters/62-feet-11½.

- Junior Jim Toth upped his provisional mark and PR distance at 18.73 meters/61-feet-5½.

- Both juniors Stephen Pop (18.10 meters/59-feet-4¾) and Brandon Sicurella (17.69 meters/58-feet-0½) turned in provisional efforts on Friday.

UP NEXT: Day 2 of the Kent State Golden Flash Gala on Saturday (Dec. 9).