BOSTON – In perhaps one of the most shocking upsets of the day, University of Chicago track & field earned its 10th overall national championship with first-year Isabel Maletich's surprise victory in the long jump on Friday's Day 1 of the 2019 NCAA Division III Indoor Track & Field Championships.
Maletich – who also became the first UChicago first-year to win a title – came in as the 18th seed and left as a champion, besting her former personal record by .29 centimeters (just over 11 inches) for a winning jump of 5.91 meters at the Reggie Lewis Track & Athletic Center.
The rookie fouled her first of six jumps, made good on her next two and fouled her fourth, standing at that point with a mark of 5.65 meters. Her fifth jump proved to be the most impressive, and she followed that up with a mark of 5.88, which still topped her previous best before Friday by .26 centimeters.
The mark of 5.91 also broke her own school record, the last time set with her University Athletic Association title mark of 5.62. She becomes the first national title winner since Michelle Dobbs won the 800 in 2016 and the fourth indoor champion for the Maroons.
Two Maroons earned qualifying times in the men's and women's 3,000-meter preliminaries, as both Sophie Elgamal (fifth, 9:54.47) and Ryan Cutter (10th, 8:23.37) advanced to Saturday's finals, with the women's race up first at 3:40 p.m. CT.
Rounding out UChicago's competitors in Friday's finals included junior Laura Darcey in the pentathlon (10th, 3,349), Isabel Garon (11th, 3.70m) in the pole vault, and Claire Brockway was 17th (17:34.66) in the 5,000 meters.
Joining Cutter and Elgmal in competition for UChicago Saturday includes Alexander Scott (shot put, 2:15p CT), Maletich (triple jump, 10a CT), and Darcey and Alexandra Thompson in the high jump (10a CT).
UChicago Finishers (Day 1)
Long jump final – 1, Isabel Maletich (5.91 meters)
3,000 prelims – 5, Sophie Elgamal (9:54.47)*
Mile prelims – 14, Emma Dyer (5:06.35)
Pole vault final – 11, Isabel Garon (3.70m) (of 18)
800 prelims – 11, Kaitlyn Van Baalen (2:15.49)
5,000 final – 17, Claire Brockway (17:34.66)
Pentathlon final – 10, Laura Darcey (3,349) (seeded 19th)
3,000 prelims – 10, Ryan Cutter (8:23.37)*
- Saturday, March 9: UChicago at NCAA Indoor National Championships, 10a CT