Courtesy Wade Erin Sicher was just one of several Hoyas to earn qualifying times this weekend at Penn State.

With the Big East Championships looming, Georgetown set out last weekend to work on obtaining a range of qualifying times at the Penn State National Open. After posting solid results in several areas and having particular success in the sprints and relays, the Hoyas were able to accomplish their goal.

“We came out of the meet healthy and with a lot of good performances on the board,” Associate Head Coach Andrew Valmon said. “I felt like overall, we did what we came to do, and then some. We had a lot of kids show up pretty big and qualify for Big East and IC4As, and the older kids that we were leaning on also came through and led by example.”

Junior Ali Najjar turned in one of the men’s top performances as he earned an NCAA provisional qualification in the 800m run. Georgetown entered seven athletes in the event’s massive 59-runner field, and Najjar placed first overall with a time of 1:50.09. Junior Jesse O’Connell, who had previously this season run an NCAA provisional mark of 1:49.70, placed second with a time of 1:50.22. Senior Ezra Richards, running unattached, finished fifth overall in 1:52.01. Sophomore Nat Glackin (1:54.07) and freshmen Courtney Jaworski (1:53.37), Chris Lukezic (1:54.15) and Stanley Lagrenade (1:54.42) also ran Big East qualifying times in the event.

“It was a very impressive run in the 800m,” Valmon said. “It’s good to see six or seven men at one school that can run sub 1:54 and two that can run provisional times for the NCAA. Those guys have been able to push each other, and the strength of the group is the numbers.”

The team also found success in the 400m, where senior James Graham (48.06), freshman Chris Bonner (48.55), senior Michael Williams (49.04) and junior Andrew Nolen (49.63) all racked up conference qualifying marks.

Seniors Dylan Welsh and George O’Loughlin both had career days in their respective events. Welsh ran a personal best of 2:24.63 in the 1,000m and O’Loughlin timed 4:07.57 in the mile. O’Loughlin narrowly missed an NCAA provisional qualifying mark in the mile, while Welsh’s race placed him No. 21 on Georgetown’s all-time performance list in the 1,000m.

Senior Robert Wingate-Robinson put on a display of resiliency as he ran a 46-second split on the 4 x 400m relay just 20 minutes after narrowly missing an NCAA provisional mark in the 200m, where he timed 21.58 for third place. The 4 x 400m team recovered nicely after being bumped during the first handoff, and finished the race second in 3:15.53.

Sophomore Rod Koborsi and senior Chris Miltenberg led the team in the longer distances as Koborsi timed 8:10.33 for fourth place and Miltenberg timed 8:18.39 for sixth place in the 3,000m.

The women’s team also had a productive meet, marked by first-place finishes in the 4 x 400m and 4 x 800m, a NCAA provisional qualifying time in the distance medley relay, and standout individual performances in the sprints.

“The highlight was definitely the quarter milers,” Assistant Coach Juli Henner said. “The 4 x 400m ran tremendously well, and that was a great way to end the day.”

The 4 x 400m relay team, comprised of senior Jamillah Bowman, freshman Danielle Rodgers and juniors Monica Hargrove and Kori Hamilton, placed first in with a time of 3:41.26. All four runners also posted fantastic individual results as Bowman won the 500m in a personal best time of 1:12.73, followed by Rodgers in fifth place with a time of 1:16.42. Hargrove and Hamilton timed 55.14 and 55.28 to finish second and fifth, respectively, in the open 400m.

The Hoyas also claimed a victory in the 4 x 800m relay, where the team of freshmen Sabine Knothe, Meghan O’Neil and Whitney Schmucker and junior Rose Wetzel timed 9:02.43 to defeat runner-up Princeton by more than five seconds.

Georgetown’s distance medley relay team placed second overall but improved upon an NCAA provisional qualifying mark set earlier this season. The team of Hamilton, Hargrove, junior Treniere Clement and senior Erin Sicher timed 11:30.37 to better their old mark of 11:34.22, which they obtained on Jan. 17. As a member of the distance medley relay team, Clement has now earned NCAA qualifying marks in four events – more than any other athlete in the country – and her time of 2:06.86 in the 800m, which she ran at the Virginia Tech Invitational, still stands as the best in the nation.

In addition to the distance medley, Clement also competed individually in the mile at the Penn State National Open, where she placed second with a time of 4:48.19 – a mark that meets NCAA standards, but falls short of a time she ran in the event earlier this season at the George Mason Invitational. O’Neil (5:00.21) and freshmen Kim Malcolm (5:02.03) and Erin Henry (5:06.77) followed Clement in the event with impressive performances.

Sophomores Jodee Adams-Moore (9:39.53) and Nicole Lee (9:44.09) led the team in the 3,000m run.

“Jodee ran a very really nice 3k, and Nicole did as well, although with about 250m to go, Nicole fell down-but she was right there with Jodee and I know that she would have held on to run a very, very good 3k and run a PR,” Henner said.

Next weekend, a small group of runners will travel to South Bend, Ind. for the Notre Dame Invitational, while the remaining members of the team will rest for the Armory Invitational the following weekend.

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