Linsley, Relay Team Star at Easterns In Record-Breaking Season Finale
The Harvard women's track team closed out the 1981 outdoor season in fine style last weekend with strong performances, especially in the two-mile relay, at the EAIAW Championships hosted by Penn State.
Although Harvard doesn't have a tradition of giving national power Penn State a run for their money, the Crimson did well with the small contingent it flew down to State College, Pa. The women shattered two old school records and posted several personal bests during the two-day meet.
Harvard placed third in the two-mile relay, won by overall champions Penn State in 8:46, but was just edged out of second place in the last 100 yards by Georgetown's team, described as "very tough" by head coach Pappy Hunt. However, the 9:04 time run by the team of co-captain Becky Rogers, Grace de Fries, Lucy Ashley, and co-captain Martha Clabby shaved 1.69 seconds off the old Harvard outdoor record, set at last year's Easterns.
Kristin Linsley also put in an excellent performance, running the 3000 meters in 9:47, setting a new school record and nabbing sixth-place points for the Crimson.
Other Harvard performers continued their history of strong showings, which have contributed to twin victories in the team's past two meets. Shot-put sensation Kim Johnson made the finals in her event but was nosed out of the scoring by the competition. Lindy Yeagher and Wiley McCarthy ran good races in the 5000- and 10,000-meter runs, while Liane Rozzell cleared five feet, two inches in the high jump, not far below the winning height of five feet, six inches.
"Both John [assistant coach John Babington] and I were really pleased with how the girls did," Hunt said yesterday. It was Ashley's first time running the two-mile relay, and her 2:18 split was consequently her personal best.
Incidentally, State College is famous around Dillon Field House as the hometown of co-captain Rogers. Rogers. who ran a 2:13 personal best in the leadoff leg of the relay, treated the team to a tour of State College as only a native can. Rogers reported the pinball palaces and "Stickies," a cinnamon roll indigenous to the area, proved the biggest hits among the visiting Cambridge dwellers.
Rogers summed up Harvard's performance at the Easterns from the viewpoint of a senior winding up her track career. "It was a great way to end my season, in my own hometown," she said, calling the team's showing "good, given the fact that we're moving into reading period and exams."
The tracksters ended their regular season in triumph over Yale in their only home meet May 2. In a decisive 77-50 victory, the Crimson continued a 14-year tradition of defeating Yale in track. However, being gracious hostesses, the Distinguished Performer Award went to a Yalie. Junior Pat Melton earned the honors by winning five events, including the long jump, the 400-meter hurdles, and the 100-yard dash.
Just like the victory in the Greater Boston Championships one week earlier, the Yale win was the result of a team effort. "The really encouraging thing about Yale was that everybody came together and did very well," Rogers said. Among the stellar performances was the 1-2-3 sweep in the discus, pulled off by Kim Johnson, Debbie Markson, and Beth Cooley.
Rogers and Ashley both broke the old Harvard Stadium record of 60.0 in the 400-meter run, with Ashley posting a 59.8 and Rogers flying in right behind with 59.9. Yale's Ellis won the race in 59.3. Cathy Busby and Karen Blount qualified for Easterns, unfortunately beyond the deadline, with 12.2 and 12.3 times in the 100-meter dash.