The Emory University Women's Track and Field team closed out an excellent NCAA Division III Outdoor Championships on Saturday at UW-La Crosse, recording five All-America finishes including three national runner-up efforts.
The Eagles posted top-four finishes in all five events the team competed in on Saturday with senior Gabrielle Stravach, junior Dani Bland and the 4x400m Relay of Bland, junior Dilys Osei, sophomore Kaitlyn Leonard and senior Erica Goldman turning in second place showings. Emory totaled 35 points at the three-day meet to finish 5th in the team standings, which represents the highest national finish ever for an Emory team, men or women, in program history. George Fox and UMass-Boston were crowned co-champions on the women's side with 44 points.
The 4x400m nearly captured the first-ever relay national championship in school history but was edged out by Nebraska Wesleyan in one of the faster races in Division III history. The Eagles got off to a strong start with great opening legs, holding the lead from the start of the race up until the very final turn before NWU's Kaylee Jones overtook Goldman and outlasted her over the home stretch to win the national title. Nebraska Wesleyan finished with a time of 3:42.15, the sixth fastest time in Division III history while the Eagles clocked in at a new school record time of 3:42.97, the 11th fastest mark in DIII history. The national runner-up finish is the highest outdoor finish ever for the Eagles in the event.
Stravach recorded her second straight All-America performance in the 1500m Run, improving upon her fifth place showing from last year. Stravach shaved eight seconds off her preliminary time to take second overall with a season-best time of 4:28.61.
The 4x100m relay of Osei, Bland, Goldman and freshman Rebekah Bondi began the afternoon for the Eagles, placing fourth in the finals. Their time of 47.04 was just .02 off of their prelim mark and is the fifth fastest in team history.
Bland captured individual All-America honors in both the 100m and 200m Dashes. She finished as the national runner-up in the 100m at 11.97, just .10 seconds behind Claremont-Mudd-Scripps' Tyra Abraham. Bland added All-America honors in the 200m for the first time in her career, taking third at 24.66. Both finishes were the highest-ever in those respective events by an Eagle in team history. In total, Bland's four All-America honors are the most by an individual in a single NCAA meet in program history and her eight combined All-America awards, indoors and outdoors, are the most by a student-athlete in Emory Track and Field history.