by Benny Benton
MOUNT OLIVE, N.C. – Barton College sophomore Meghan Araldi posted her first collegiate women's track victory on Saturday, winning the 5000-meter run at the Trojan Challenge hosted by University of Mount Olive.
The Albany, N.Y., resident led a field of six to the finish line with a personal record time of 19:38.52.
It marked the second meet in a row that Araldi produced an impactful performance. Last week at UNC Charlotte's 49er Classic, she broke the school record in the 3000-meter steeplechase.
In addition to Araldi's win, the Lady Bulldogs received high finishes from freshman Jasmine Watson in the 100-meter hurdles and Sharon Kiptoo in the 800-meter run. Watson placed third out of 11 in the preliminary round of the 100-meter hurdles with a PR run of 14.75 seconds before coming home fourth in the finals. Kiptoo finished fourth out of 26 in the 800 with a mark of 2:26.55.
Nine different Lady Bulldogs recorded a total of 16 benchmarks by competing in events for the first time collegiately. Five of them made their overall Barton track debuts – senior Alexis Smith (shot put), junior Carla Joseph (shot put), sophomores Taylor Everly (100-meters, 200-meters) and Mikaela Thomas (100-meters), and freshman Alayna Moore (pole vault).
Barton will return to action next weekend in the Raleigh Relays, hosted by North Carolina State University.