MANCHESTER, N.H. (April 6, 2019) – Freshman Paola Brena (Queretaro, Mexico) likely punched her ticket to the NCAA Championships on Saturday, as she matched the nation's third-best mark in the high jump on the season to win the event at the SNHU Spring Invitational, hosted by Southern New Hampshire. Brena's performance helped lead the Franklin Pierce University women's track & field team to a third-place finish, out of six teams, at the meet.
In all, the Ravens posted 14 top-three finishes and three event wins as part of a 121-point day. Franklin Pierce was third behind host SNHU (196 points) and Merrimack (139 points).
Brena's mark was the cream of the crop on Saturday for the Ravens, who made their hay in the day's field events. She got up and over 1.73 meters, which won the event, hit the NCAA Championships provisional qualifying mark, met the NEICAAA Championships qualifying mark and established a new school record. Though the outdoor season is still young, the height is currently tied for third in the country, which should be enough to qualify Brena for the national championship meet at the end of May. Historically, the height of 1.73 meters has been enough to qualify student-athletes for the NCAA Championships.
Franklin Pierce also picked up event wins from seniors Lilian Baah (Danielson, Conn.) and CeCe Telfer (Lebanon, N.H.) on Saturday. Telfer met the NEICAAA Championships qualifying mark in the 100-meter dash, with a winning time of 12.42 seconds to set a new school record, while Baah captured first place in the triple jump, with a distance of 11.21 meters. Baah also finished second in the long jump, at 4.89 meters.
Baah's pair, along with Brena's win, were three of 12 top-three finishes for the Ravens in field events at the meet. Junior Katey Comstock (Windsor, Vt.), senior Kendra Covington (Torrington, Conn.) and junior Savannah Drowne (Athol, Mass.) all joined Baah as athletes who posted multiple top-three finishes on the day. Comstock took second in both the shot put (11.50m) and the discus (36.74m). Covington took second in the hammer (42.25m) and third in the shot put (10.97m). Drowne finished third in both the hammer (40.39m) and the javelin (31.70m).
Behind Brena in the high jump, junior Olivia Mabbett (Milford, N.H.) cleared 1.50 meters to finish third. Freshman Stephanie Phoenix (Wallingford, Conn.) rounded out the field-event highlights with a third-place finish in the pole vault (2.90m).
Out on the track, freshman Alana Thompson (Westampton, N.J.) added a second-place finish in the mile (5:25.84), while the Ravens' 4x100-meter relay team chalked up a second-place finish as well. A lineup of Baah, Telfer, freshman Shamsa Mahijibhai (Leominster, Mass.) and freshman MaCayla Glenn (Springfield, Mass.) combined to turn in a time of 50.07 seconds.
The Ravens return to action on Friday and Saturday, April 12 and 13, when they travel to New London, Conn., for the Silfen Invitational, hosted by Connecticut College.
For more information on Franklin Pierce Athletics, please visit the official website of Franklin Pierce Athletics (https://www.fpuravens.com). Also be sure to follow the Ravens through the Department of Athletics' official Facebook page (http://www.facebook.com/FranklinPierceRavens), its YouTube channel (http://www.youtube.com/franklinpiercesports) and its Twitter feed (http://twitter.com/FPUathletics). Fans wishing to purchase Franklin Pierce track & field apparel can do so at the Department of Athletics' online store (https://www.fpuravens.com/store).