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University of Chicago Department of Athletics & Recreation

Maroons track and field host day one of the UAA Outdoor Championships

Reecie Dern, Sarah Peluse and Daniel Povitsky
Reecie Dern, Sarah Peluse and Daniel Povitsky

CHICAGO, Ill. – The University of Chicago track and field teams earned four wins as day one hosts of the 2014 University Athletic Association (UAA) Outdoor Track & Field Championships on Saturday.

UChicago leads the women's field with 78 points thanks to three event victories, with Washington University-St. Louis in second with 67.50 points. Junior Reecie Dern heaved the shot put 11.63 meters to take first place, while sophomore teammate and defending conference champion Nkemdilim Nwaokolo was second at 11.14 meters. The 4x800-meter relay team utilized a fast start and a strong final leg to win in a time of 9:20.85. The relay consisted of senior Elise Wummer, sophomore Brianna Hickey, sophomore Rebecca Askins-Gast and freshman Michelle Dobbs. In the 10,000 meters, senior Sarah Peluse led for the great majority of the race and closed with a winning time of 37:29.89.

Nwaokolo was also runner-up in the hammer throw with a toss of 44.54 meters. Junior Kelly Wood was right behind her in third at 43.04 meters. Senior Michaela Whitelaw picked up third-place points in the 3,000-meter steeplechase (11:28.63).

On the men's side, Carnegie Mellon University is in front with 69 points and UChicago stands in third with 47.50 points. Senior Daniel Povitsky provided the biggest highlight in the last event of the evening – the 10,000 meters. Povitsky stayed near the front of the pack for the duration of race and then turned on the afterburners for the final four laps. The senior flew past the field with a big kick and won by nine seconds (32:07.94).

Blustery conditions kept the heights low in the pole vault competition. Sophomore Michael Bennett, the defending champion, tied for the top mark with 4.57 meters but finished in second due to the missed jumps tiebreaker.

Additionally, UChicago's men finished third in a pair of races. Senior Griffin Brunk ran the 3,000-meter steeplechase with a time of 9:34.46, and the men's 4x800-meter relay finished in 7:55.04 (junior Kevin Vollrath, freshman Jeremy Ferguson, freshman Nicholas Nielsen, sophomore Michael Frasco).

UChicago Top Finishers (Men)
10,000 meters – Daniel Povitsky (1st, 32:07.94)
Pole Vault – Michael Bennett (2nd, 4.57 meters)
3,000-meter Steeplechase – Griffin Brunk (3rd, 9:34.46)
4x800-meter relay – 3rd, 7:55.04 (Kevin Vollrath, Jeremy Ferguson, Nicholas Nielsen, Michael Frasco)

UChicago Top Finishers (Women)
Shot Put – Reecie Dern (1st, 11.63 meters); Nkemdilim Nwaokolo (2nd, 11.14 meters)
10,000 meters – Sarah Peluse (1st, 37:29.89)
4x800-meter relay – 1st, 9:20.85 (Elise Wummer, Brianna Hickey, Rebecca Askins-Gast, Michelle Dobbs)
Hammer Throw – Nkemdilim Nwaokolo (2nd, 44.54 meters); Kelly Wood (3rd, 43.04 meters)
3,000-meter Steeplechase – Michaela Whitelaw (3rd, 11:28.63)


  • Sunday, Apr. 27 – UAA Championships at UChicago, 10 AM