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Monday, March 14, 2005


MEDFORD – Head coach Kristen Morwick and five members of the Tufts University women's indoor track & field team were honored during this weekend's NCAA Division III Championships hosted by Illinois Wesleyan University on March 11-12.

Five Jumbos earned All-American recognition with their performance at the meet: senior Claudia Clarke (Lynn, MA/Lynn), junior Rachel Bloom (Sharon, MA/Sharon), freshman Kaleigh Fitzpatrick (Lynnfield, MA/Lynnfield, MA), sophomore Jillian Warner (Long Valley, NJ/West Morris Central) and sophomore Sarah Crispin (Auburn, ME/Edward Little). Also, Morwick was chosen as the NCAA New England Coach of the Year.

The Jumbos' best finish at the NCAAs came in the 4x4, where the foursome of Clarke, Bloom, Fitzpatrick and Warner finished the race in 3 minutes, 58.76 seconds for an All-American sixth place finish in the final field of eight. The final three spots were up for grabs as less than half a second separated the sixth through eighth place finishers, with Tufts finishing just 0.16 of a second ahead of seventh place Wartburg. Tufts had qualified for the final with a 3:57.42 in the preliminaries on Friday. They scored three points for Tufts with their sixth place in the final.

Scoring one point for the Jumbos was Crispin, the Jumbos' sole individual finisher at the meet. Crispin was seeded 12th in the 800 meter run, but improved on her seed by finishing eighth with an All-American time of 2:21.39. She ran a 2:15.46 in the faster of two preliminary heats on Friday to qualify for the final.

The Jumbos tied for 40th at the meet, scoring four points total. Tufts was second at the New England Division III Championships and ninth at the All New England meet earlier this season. Morwick, in her fifth season at Tufts, guided the team back to another strong national showing despite losing several All-Americans from last year's squad.