The University of Colorado women’s Distance Medley Relay team won their first National Championship title in dramatic fashion Friday night at the Gilliam Indoor Stadium at the 2017 NCAA Indoor Championships in College Station, Texas.
The relay kicked off with with Tabor Scholl running 1,200 meters. Scholl stayed in the middle of the field but got pushed back a little bit by other teams right before she passed the baton to Elissa Mann for her 400 meter run. Sage Hurta ran a strong 800 meters holding steady before handing off the final leg to Dani Jones. Jones, who started off the final leg around 10th place, grinded and pushed her way into third through the first 7 laps of the 200 meter track. In the last 200 meters, Jones sprinted from third place past both Pac-12 foes Oregon and Stanford to cross the finish line .02 seconds ahead of the Stanford team to finish with a time of 11:00.34. Notably, the runners she passed, were both past Colorado high school standouts; Elise Cranny of Stanford and Katie Rainsberger of Oregon.
— NCAA Track & Field (@NCAATrackField) March 11, 2017
Head Coach Mark Wetmore comments:
Well, we honestly hoped to bring them here, and maybe finish in the top eight and earn a point or two and get some some All-American honors for some young folks. But, every women ran what we were hoping for or a little better. The first three kept Dani close enough to the lead of the race that she could do what she does best, which is run smart and patient. [She] just made contact with the lead pack with about only three laps to go. And then she gunned them down one by one. Coming off the turn it was three Pac-12 schools with Dani in third but she found another gear. Big win for us.
This is the first DMR relay to advance to the NCAA Championships in head coach Mark Wetmore’s time at CU. The team of Scholl, Mann, Hurta and Jones broke the CU DMR relay school record previously set in 2011. The win comes just after two CU Alumni; Emma Coburn and Jenny Simpson, took to the track in Boston in January to break the DMR World Record with a time of 10:40.3.