Gibbens earns all-conference

Contributed Photo: Edinboro University Sports Information
Kasey Jones (above) and Edinboro competed at PSACs
The Scots finished fifth out of 16

By Charles Ivey
Staff Writer/Spectator

After a long season, mostly on the road, the indoor track and field team returned home to host a concluding track meet. This wasn’t just any meet, though, but instead competition that featured the best of what the PSAC conference had to offer. The Mike S. Zafirovski Sports and Recreation dome held the PSAC Indoor Track and Field Championships over the weekend.

The Scots finished fifth out of 16 teams, accumulating 62 points as a squad. The Shippensburg women’s team won the conference crown with a total of 122 points as Slippery Rock finished second with a total of 114 points.

“It’s a solid showing,” said head coach Anne Carlson. “It’s the top third of the conference, eight points out of being fourth and nine points out of being third. Even though we were fifth, we were right there for a higher finish.”

Allison Gibbens earned All-PSAC honors in the 800 meter run by finishing third with a time of 2:16.52. The race nearly finished in a three-way tie as Gibbens was edged out by Slippery Rock’s Janine Powis (2nd, 2:16.28) and California’s Alexandra Zanella (1st, 2:16.16).

“Going into the meet, I was pretty relaxed and was looking to run the best I could. I was very nervous for the 800 because I had the top seed,” said Gibbens.

“The 800 just didn’t play out the way I hoped. I raced it the best way I could, and it was such a close race. I was disappointed I didn’t win, but getting All-PSAC is still a great accomplishment. [It] makes me excited to go back and go for the win in outdoor.”

Brianne Dietrich earned two top-three finishes. A first place finish in the long jump with a hop of 5.83 meters gave Dietrich hope for an extended indoor season.

“Bri went out and jumped hard,” Carlson commented. “She jumped right in the middle of the pent, she had ran in the hurdles and had to go over and long jump. She took three long jumps in less than 10 minutes and every one of her long jumps were further than anyone else so that’s pretty huge. She really dominated that event. We are sitting and waiting and hoping she gets into the national meet with her mark.”

Dietrich’s second top-three finish came from the pentathlon where she finished second with a total of 3,449 points, just falling short of Slippery Rock’s Sabrina Anderson’s 3,584 point finish.

“She [Bri] didn’t have any bad events in the pent per say,” Carlson said.

“Unfortunately, the Slippery Rock girl just had a better meet. That girl, kudos to her, she had a great meet and when it came down to it Sabrina was the better girl. Next time when they compete, it may go in Bri’s favor, but unfortunately this week that wasn’t the case.”

Kasey Jones went on to earn two top-five finishes in both the 3,000 meter run (5th, 10:07.35) and the 5,000 meter run (2nd, 17:22.09).

“Kasey Jones went second in the 5,000 and fifth in the 3,000. Two very hard doubles,” Carlson said.

“She went out hard trying [to] qualify [for nationals] and unfortunately, probably, that’s not going be the case.” The weekend also doled out a few surprises, as well, according to Carlson.

“Our 4x8 also came out of nowhere. We didn’t think that was going happen and we took second. Noelle [Jurcak], who is a senior, and has a lot on her plate right now [with] getting ready for grad school [and] finishing up school and stuff like that came out and ran an amazing leg for us. Anna Hosel also came down and ran an 800 for us which was great. Gibbens was there running the anchor, we were very pleased with that. They tallied more points than what were expected.”

Edinboro will move on to the outdoor track and field season, but has a few things it needs to finish beforehand.

“We have to finish our indoor season first,” Carlson said.

“Hopefully Bri Dietrich qualifies for the long jump and Kasey Jones and Allison Gibbens are still long shots to get in. That’s what we have first and [with] outdoors we are just going to keep plucking away at it again.”

The NCAA Division II Indoor Track and Field National Championships are held on March 13 and 14 in Birmingham, Alabama.

Charles Ivey is a staff writer for the Spectator. He can be reached by sports.spectator@gmail.com