The Dons women’s track and field team made the 500-mile journey to the “Gem State” on Jan. 24 to compete at the Idaho Center’s honored Ed Jacoby Invitational. The event was held in Nampa, Idaho just west of the Boise State University campus on the Jacksons Indoor Track — notable for hosting the 2012 NCAA Division I Indoor Track and Field Championships.
Twenty-one schools participated in Nampa, including Boise State, University of Hawai‘i, UC Santa Barbara, and USF’s cross-town rivals, San Francisco State. USF had 14 athletes in their contingent — 12 of whom were underclassmen.
The chilly temperatures in the early morning hours would not have an impact on the torrid speeds witnessed on the indoor track. Three Dons sprinters would go under eight seconds in the 60-meter dash with Rayne Anwar and Evelyn How finishing third and sixth, respectively, out of the 53 competitors.
Anwar’s time of 7.81 seconds and How’s time of 7.87 each beat the previous USF school record of 7.91, which was set by Asaundra Dalton in January 2018. Sophomore Marli Bonney recorded a prelim-time of 7.96 and missed the finals by a mere .05 seconds.
Four Dons competed in the 1,000-meter run, with freshman Abby Pradere leading the way with a time of 2 minutes, 53.07 seconds. This was Pradere’s collegiate track debut, and her time earned her a second-place finish within the field of 25. Anna Tait finished fifth with a time of 2:58.18, Baneet Bains was seventh with 3:00.10, and Emily Jackson finished 13th with a 3:09.90.
The 600-meter run showcased the talents of Julia Morales and London Lewis. Morales notched a time of 1:35.89 to finish third in the event while Lewis’ time of 1:42.15 placed her in seventh.
Faith Cardenas, Willa Gibson, Julija Praprotnik, and Hannah Esparza all competed in the 400-meter dash where both Cardenas (59.54 seconds) and Gibson (59.68) finished under the one-minute mark.
Freshman distance runner, Kalii Caldwell, recorded a time of 5:21.35 in the one-mile event.
Next, the Dons will travel to Seattle for the University of Washington Invitational on Jan. 31 and Feb. 1. The two-day event will be held at the Dempsey Indoor Center located on the banks of Union Bay. The Dempsey has become known as one of the fastest indoor tracks in the country — if this holds true, this young team is poised for a remarkable meet.