JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. – Taylor senior Abigail Phillips opened the 2017 NAIA Indoor Track & Field National Championships in style on Thursday as the senior posted a career-best mark in the pentathlon.
Phillips scored 3,148 points to finish just one spot shy of eighth place in her first-ever appearance in the national championships. Phillips opened the competition with a solid showing in the 60-meter hurdles and closed the competition with her best event by posting the third fastest time in the 800-meters.
Taylor's 4x800-meter relay team of Rachel Blagg, Margie Crosby, Naomi Noyes, and Anna Souzis also impressed on Thursday as the quartet raced to a victory in their heat of the semifinals with a school-record time of 9:19.94. Blagg opened the race with a solid split of 2:18 before Crosby took the baton and raced into the lead with a split of 2:15 before Noyes and Souzis closed out the race to lead the Trojans into the 4x800-meter relay finals scheduled for Friday evening.
Blagg and Crosby faced a quick turnaround as both also raced for TU's distance medley relay team less than two hours after the completion of the 4x800-meter relay. Blagg and Crosby joined with Miriam Wood and Mae Elizabeth Gimre to post a time of 12:36.61 en route to a 13th place finish.
Taylor's sophomore standout Plenseh-Tay Sakeuh will be the first women's track and field athlete to compete during the second day of competition on Friday when Sakeuh competes in the long jump beginning at 1:00 pm. Crosby (600-meters) and Blagg (1,000-meters) will both compete in individual events on Friday afternoon before joining Noyes and Souzis in the finals of the 4x800-meter relays on Friday at 6:20 pm.