Big Ten Championships Wrap Up
March 1, 2006
February 25-26 University of Wisconsin Madison, Wis. Camp Randall Memorial Sports Center
The Big Ten women's indoor track and field teams kicked off their postseason as the University of Wisconsin hosted the 2006 Big Ten Women's Indoor Track and Field Championships. Defending indoor champion Michigan claimed its second-consecutive and eighth overall conference crown during the event. The Wolverines faced tough competition from Penn State and Minnesota who join U-M as being ranked in the top 25 of the Feb. 21 Trackwire 25 Power Rankings. Illinois managed a second-place finish with 112 total team points. Minnesota (104.83), Penn State (85) and Wisconsin (71) rounded out the top five.
Michigan won its fourth team title in the past six years as the Wolverines dominated the event titles, boasting four individual crowns and won the distance medley relay for the second-straight year. Illinois claimed four events as Yvonne Mensah recorded first-place finishes in the 60-meter dash, long jump and triple jump. Nittany Lion Jennifer Leatherman defended both her shot put and weight throw titles from a year ago as she recorded marks of 53'05.00" and 74'10.50, respectively. Minnesota's Liz Reohrig once again claimed first place in the pentathlon as her score of 3983 was 182 points better than her mark from last year. Kineke Alexander brought home gold for Iowa in both the 200- and 400-meter dash.
At then end of competition, four new Big Ten Championships records were set. Hawkeye sprinter Kineke Alexander began the meet by shattering the 400-meter dash championships record by over a second as she clocked in at 52.31, 1.47 seconds faster than the previous mark. The Michigan quartet of Alyson Kohlmeier, Amber Hay, Geena Gall and Katie Erdman ran to a new conference record in the distance medley relay as they finished in 11:25.5 and broke a ten-year-old record set by Wisconsin in 1996. Jennifer Leatherman's 74'10.50" weight throw toss was good enough to give the Nittany Lion the new Big Ten record as she beat the previous distance by an astonishing 4'11.00". The league now has two record-holders in the pole vault as Wisconsin's Blair Luethmers cleared 13'01.75" and met the mark set Purdue Ebbie Metzinger in 2002.