The UNO track and field team returned from a Friday meet in Lincoln, Neb., freshly qualified for the NCAA Division II indoor track and field championship in the 4 x 400 meter relay.
The UNO women's track and field team will head to Wichita this weekend off a very successful performance in Cedar Falls, Iowa. At the Jack Jennett Invite at the University of Northern Iowa, the Mavs earned two first-place finishes among several personal bests on the weekend.
A week after winning four events at Northwest Missouri State, the UNO women's track team followed it up with two wins and more success at the 2012 KT Woodman Classic at Wichita State. Sophomore Kathie-Lee Laidley won the long jump with a wind-aided mark of 19-09.
Just five days after competing in six events at the Summit League Indoor Championships, Sami Spenner went to the U.S. Track and Field Indoor Championships in Albuquerque, N.M. and cemented her reputation as one of Division I's best athletes.
On Feb. 25, she was named the Field MVP at the conference championships. March 1 Spenner finished fourth in the pentathlon and bested her own school record with a final score of 4,271 points.
Spenner's result in Albuquerque was just 207 points behind winner Sharon Day, last summer's runner-up at the Olympic Trials. Weeks later Day went on to wear the red, white and blue and compete in the 2012 London Games.
But despite those facts, the NCAA denied UNO's request to grant Spenner a waiver to compete in any NCAA championship events. Steve Smith, the head coach of UNO track and field, likens the NCAA's handling of Spenner to the football program at Southern Methodist receiving the death penalty in 1987
A week after the UNO women's track and field team began the spring schedule at the Tulsa Duals, the Mavs achieved more success at the Bobby Lane Invitational at Texas-Arlington. UNO set three personal bests and had two athletes finish highly after competing in events for the first time in their careers.