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May 17, 2014
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - Senior Brittney Howell (Wyncote, Pennsylvania) captured the Big Ten title in the heptathlon, highlighting a strong day two for the Nittany Lions. Big Ten Championships action concludes Sunday. The women's team is second heading into the final day of competition with 46 points and trails leader Nebraska by two points. The men's team is tied for eighth with 20 points.
Howell captured her first career Big Ten title after a PR in the javelin (108-2) and solid performances in the long jump (19-8) and 800 meters (2:28.38). Howell finished with 5,515 points, 25 points ahead of the runner-up. Later in the day, she also finished fourth in the long jump with a jump measuring 20-0.25.
Fresh off her Big Ten title in the hammer yesterday, Melissa Kurzdorfer (Lancaster, New York) placed fifth in today's shot put, while teammates Rachel Fatherly (Williamsport, Pennsylvania) and Alyssa Robinson (Saint Clairsville, Ohio) also added to the Nittany Lions' point total with a seventh and eighth place finish, respectively.
Points-producing success in the field continued with senior Laura Loht (McClure, Pennsylvania) and junior Lauren Kenney (State College, Pennsylvania) finishing 3-4. Sophomore Tori Gerlach (Perkasie, Pennsylvania) added to the team total with a sixth-place finish in the 3000-meter steeplechase.
The Penn State women advanced numerous Nittany Lions to Sunday's finals on the track including junior Shelley Black (Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania) in the 400 meter hurdles, redshirt-senior Evonne Britton (El Paso, Texas) in the 100 and 400 meter hurdles, redshirt-senior Mahagony Jones (Cleveland, Ohio) in the 100 and 200 meters, senior Marta Klebe (Chesterbrook, Pennsylvania) in the 1500 meters, junior Dynasty McGee (Flint, Michigan) in the 200 and 400 meters, and sophomore Kiah Seymour (Washington, D.C.) in the 400 meter hurdles.
On the men's side, decathlete Rob Cardina (Lancaster, Pennsylvania) took home third after two days of solid competition. Senior Jon Hendershot (Nazareth, Pennsylvania) was fourth in the high jump after each of the top four jumpers cleared 7-0.25. Junior Steve Waithe (Parkvile, Maryland) also secured a fourth place in the long jump for the Nittany Lions. Waithe's jump measured at 24-0.25. Junior Dylan Bilka (Seven Fields, Pennsylvania) jumped a lifetime best in the pole vault (16-8.75) to finish in fifth-place.
Qualifying for Sunday's finals on the track were junior Sancho Barrett (Amityville, New York) in the 110-meter hurdles, sophomore Brannon Kidder (Lancaster, Ohio) in the 1500 meters, and sophomore Za'Von Watkins (Liverpool, New York) in the 800 meters.
Big Ten Championships action at Purdue concludes Sunday with events kicking-off at 10:00 a.m. Follow @PennStateTFXC on Twitter for updates throughout the meet.