The UNO women's track field team concluded their indoor season Friday at the Nebraska Tune-Up in Lincoln at the Devaney Center. Just like the last few weeks, records were broken and personal bests were beaten as the Mavs get ready for the outdoor season.
Since the beginning of the season, the UNO women's track and field team has been setting personal bests and meet records weekend after weekend. Last Saturday at the Concordia Indoor Invitational in Seward, Neb. was no different.
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 second place finish at The Summit League Indoor Championships on Feb. 25 made UNO Track and Field the first program on campus to bring home conference hardware and add a Division I trophy to the case.
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
Lianne McNaughton, Kathie-Lee Laidley and Denneil Shaw all took their love for track to the next level when they left their home country of Jamaica to come to an unknown place called Nebraska.
"I didn't know where (Nebraska) was when I landed," McNaughton said. "I found out after where I was when I was there."
Shaw and Laidley, both junior jumpers on the team, knew each other before coming to UNO from St. Andrew High School for Girls in Portmore, Jamaica, near the capital city of Kingston. Senior thrower Lianne McNaughton attended Campion College High School in Kingston before coming to UNO.
All three are major contributors to a team that looks to be one of the strongest in The Summit League.