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Racing herself:Purrier breaks her own program record in 1,500-meter run

Junior Elinor Purrier broke her own UNH school record in the 1,500-meter run with a time of four minutes, 14.48 seconds.

The ‘Cats are outside now, and that is very good news for Elinor Purrier and her teammates. While the outdoor season has officially started, it was not without delays as the competitors who traveled to Orono, Maine were forced to wait an extra day due to inclement weather .

To start things off with a bang, several men and women with the track team traveled down to Williamsburg, Virginia to compete in the Colonial Relays meet.

On Friday, Purrier broke her own 1,500-meter record with her 4-minutes, 14.48-seconds finish, besting her old record of 4:18.59. On the next day, Purrier was asked to race in the 4×1,500-meter relay. Purrier, Shannon Murdock, Sarah Keiran and Danielle Gajewski collaborated for a first-place effort. Their time of 18:19.46 broke the school record from last year by 14.81 seconds.

The Colonial Relays proved to be a very successful meet, thanks to many individual and group performances. The high points of the three-day meet came in the form of the men’s distance medley relay (DMR) team, the women’s 4×1,500-meter relay team and Purrier’s new school record in the 1,500m. Both relay teams collected an impressive first place out of 26 teams after qualifying for the finals, while Purrier finished first by more than a second.

The women’s team had very successful meet with four top 5 finishes.  Sophomore Shannon Murdock captured second in the 3,000m (9:40.18) and senior Jeannette Mara leapt her way to a fifth-place finish in the high jump, tying her personal record at 5-feet, 7-inches.

Elinor Purrier’s blistering 1,500m race and the incredible effort by the 4×1,500m team gave UNH two first place finishes. On Friday, Purrier broke her own 1,500m record with her 4:14.48 finish, besting her old record of 4:18.59. On the next day, Purrier was asked to race in the 4×1,500m relay. Purrier, Sarah Keiran, Shannon Murdock and Danielle Gajewski destroyed the old school record from last year by 14.81.00 seconds. Their time of 18:19.46 was ahead of the next team by thirty seconds and wrapped up a very successful meet for the ‘Cats. UNH finished tied up at eight with 32 points. 

Staying consistent with the relays, Brett Hoerner, John Cox, Jacob Kittredge and William Ulrich composed the men’s first place DMR team that completed the circuit in 10 minutes, 1.10.00 seconds. Kittredge also had a respectable sixth place finish in the 800m for a new personal record of 1:51.83. Ulrich was close behind for seventh place in 1:52.10.

Cox also competed in the 400m and the 4x400m relay team. Others on the relay team include Andrew McFarland, Ross Hardy and Brandon Allen. All four pulled together for a 16th place finish with a time of 3:19.18. McFarland placed well in the 400m hurdles, coming in 12th (55.41).

Overall, the men’s team finished 21st after the three-day meet came to an end, with 17 points.

Next up: The ‘Cats will host Holy Cross and Maine at the Reggie Atkins Track & Field Facility Saturday, April 8 for a home meet. Events start at 11 a.m.   

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