Ohio State Ready for the 2014 Big Ten Indoor Championships

Adenike Pedro
Adenike Pedro

Feb. 27, 2014

COLUMBUS, Ohio – The Ohio State women’s track and field team travels to Geneva, Ohio, this Friday, Feb. 28, and Saturday, March 1, for the 2014 Big Ten Indoor Championships at SPIRE Institute.  

Follow the action all weekend with Twitter updates on the official women’s track and field Twitter account, @OhioState_WTRK. A complete recap will be available after the meet at www.OhioStateBuckeyes.com.

Championship Basics
Days: Friday, Feb. 28 (10:00 a.m. - 6:50 p.m. ET) and Saturday, March 1 (10:00 a.m. - 4:50 p.m. ET) Venue: SPIRE Institute – Geneva, Ohio 
Television: BTN will air tape-delay coverage of the Big Ten championships at 10:30 a.m. ET on Saturday, March 8.
Twitter: @OhioState_WTRK and @BigTenChamps. Official hashtag, #B1GTF

Scouting the Best of the Big Ten
No. 11 Penn State – The top-ranked team in the conference is led by sprinters Mahogany Jones and Kiah Seymour. Jones holds the conference’s top times in the 60- and 200-meter dashes this season. Her mark in the 60 meters is currently fifth nationally, while her 200-meter time is tied for eighth. Seymour holds the Big Ten’s best time in the 400-meter dash. The Lions also feature the nation’s seventh-ranked 4x400-meter relay team.

No. 17 Purdue – The Boilermakers feature one of the nation’s finest all-around throwers, Dani Bunch. Bunch holds the top marks in the conference in the weight throw and shot put, ranking second and fourth in Division I in the respective events.

No. 30 Michigan – Distance leads the way once again for the Wolverines. UM is ranked seventh nationally in the Distance Medley and boasts the conference’s top middle-distance and long-distance runners in Brook Handler and Erin Finn.

About SPIRE Institute
SPIRE Institute is one of the largest indoor, multi-sport, training and competition complexes in the world. With more than 750,000 square feet under roof and acres of outdoor facilities, it has the unique capacity to simultaneously host clubs, leagues, tournaments and championship events no matter the weather or season. Every consideration has been taken to create an unparalleled experience for the athlete, the coach and the spectator.  

SPIRE Institute was founded on the belief that sports and education enrich lives. Through healthy competition, individuals build character and the drive to help them reach their full potential.  

Ohio State History at the Big Ten Championships
After totaling 19 Top-5 team finishes in 32 seasons at the Big Ten championships, Ohio State finally brought home a conference title in 2011 with a 36.50-point win over the three-time defending champion Penn State. The Buckeyes followed up their win in 2011 with a runner-up finish in 2012.  

Three Buckeyes have taken home the Athlete of the Championship award. Donica Merriman earned the recognition in both 2000 and 2001 after winning the 60-meter hurdles and 200-meter dash each season. Bridgette Tate received the award in 1988 after her first-place finishes in the 55-meter dash, 55-meter hurdles and 300-yard run. Christina Manning captured the honor in both 2012 and 2011 meet after dominating the field in the 60-meter hurdles and short sprints.  

Manning owns the current meet record in the 60-meter hurdles (7.95). Two Ohio State indoor championship records have been retired: Diane Dixon's 300-yard run in 1983 (33.83) and Tate's 60-yard hurdle performance in 1987 (7.78).



Recapping the 2013 Big Ten Championships
Last season at SPIRE Institute, Illinois took home its sixth Big Ten championship and first since 1996, compiling 115 points en route to first-place honors. Nebraska finished second with 112 points, while Michigan placed third with 89 points. Penn State came in fourth with 73 points, and Ohio State recorded 66 points to round out the Top 5.

Aisha Cavin was the star of the meet for the Buckeyes, earning silver and bronze medals in the 400 meters and 200 meters, respectively, and anchoring the 4x400-meter relay team to a bronze-medal finish. In all, Cavin contributed a total of 20 points to the final team score. As a collective unit, Ohio State enjoyed balanced scoring from a variety of event areas, including sprints, jumps, middle distance and throws.

Scarlet and Gray Ranked No. 45 in USTFCCCA Poll
Ohio State is the 45th-ranked team in the nation according to the fifth regular-season edition of the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) Division I National Team Computer Rankings.   The Buckeyes are one of five Big Ten women's programs in the Top 50. Oregon is the top-ranked team in the country according to the poll, while Florida comes in at No. 2 and Texas A&M at No. 3.

Last Time Out
Ohio State hosted the Buckeye Tune-Up Feb. 21 at French Field House.

The Buckeyes claimed wins in nine events. Highlights included personal bests from Alexandria Johnson in the 60-meter hurdles (8.38), SoSo Walker in the 600-meter run (1:30.79), and Emily Taylor in the weight throw (19.06m/62-6.50).

Up Next
Qualifying athletes compete at the 2014 NCAA Indoor Championships March 12-14 in Fayetteville, Ark.