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Reaching the mountaintop

2015 Women’s Division III Indoor Track and Field

by: Jardyn Angell

In 24 years as head coach of the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse women’s track team, Pat Healy has finished second at five indoor national championships. The gold has always eluded him.

After finishing second in 2014, just two points behind champion Wisconsin-Oshkosh,  Wisconsin-La Crosse saw 2015 as a year of opportunity. But with only eight points after the first day of competition at the 2015 indoor championships, the Eagles’ 19th-place standing did not look promising.

Then a flurry of medals on Saturday, ,including Bria Halama’s second straight triple jump title and the team’s third consecutive first-place finish in the 1,600-meter relay, pushed Wisconsin-La Crosse over the top. The team finished with 55 points, six points ahead of Wisconsin-Oshkosh, to finally capture its first championship.

The past for Healy and the Wisconsin-La Crosse women’s team includes too many heartbreakingly close second-place finishes. But after a 47-point Saturday, Healy and the Eagles hoisted the first national championship trophy in school history.

 

“To actually get over that hump and be able to present that first-place national trophy to my team is going to be one of the most wonderful things that I could think of,” Healy said.

The Results

2015 Women’s Division III Women’s Indoor Track and Field

The Finish
Wisconsin-La Crosse 55, Wisconsin-Oshkosh 49, Illinois Wesleyan 39, Wisconsin-Eau Claire 34, MIT 34

Elite 89 Honoree
Amy Viti, Misericordia University

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