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Neuenswander Ties Big Ten Vault Record

May 13, 2011

IOWA CITY, Iowa -- Vera Neuenswander provided the highlight of the first day at the Big Ten Championships, tying the all-time Big Ten Outdoor record for the win in the pole vault, and helping the Hoosier women to finish the day in the team lead with 31 points. The IU men finished the day in seventh place with seven points.

Vera Neuenswander

Photo by Mike Dickbernd/IU Athletics

Vera Neuenswander

Neuenswander cleared 4.36m (14-3.5) to tie the all-time Big Ten outdoor record, break the conference meet record by a centimeter, and increase her own IU record by five centimeters, moving herself into fourth on the national list. The senior won the Big Ten title to complete a book end career with outdoor titles in her freshman and fifth-year senior campaigns. Teammate Kelsie Ahbe took second, clearing 4.26m (13-11.75), to improve her lifetime best and move into sole possession of second in the IU record books. Stephanie Chin took eighth to give the Hoosiers 19 points in the event.

The women's 10,000 meters saw Chelsea Blanchard finish fourth and Erica Ridderman take seventh. Blanchard ran a time of 35:09.29 in the first 10K of her career. The time is the 10th-fastest in IU history. Ridderman finished in 35.29.33 to bring a total of seven points to the IU total in the race.

Zach Mayhew was sixth in the men's 10K, clocking a time of 29:38.31 to score three Hoosier points.

Faith Sherrill and Monique Riddick took fifth and eighth respectively in the women's hammer throw. Sherrill had a throw of 54.38m (178-5), adding nearly two meters to her season best. Riddick had a heave of 52.20m (171-3), adding more than two meters to her career mark for sixth in IU history and a point for the Hoosier cause.

In the men's hammer, Tommy Smith became the fourth Hoosier ever to exceed 60 meters. He took fifth with a heave of 60.20m (197-6). The mark is the fourth-best in school history.

In the women's heptathlon, Laura Morris and Courtney Woodard are in sixth and eighth through four events. Morris posted a first day total of 2,991 points and Woodard amassed 2,831.

The Hoosiers continue action at the Big Ten Championships on Saturday in Iowa City, Iowa.