The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University

The Vanderbilt Hustler

The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University.
Since 1888
The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University

The Vanderbilt Hustler

The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University.
The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University

The Vanderbilt Hustler

The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University.

Track and Field: Commodores continue to dominate, Oladipo establishes SEC best in shot put at Florida Relays

Despite a rain delay in Gainesville, the Commodores continued excellent performances in their outdoor season at the Florida Relays.
Vanderbilt Athletics
Vanderbilt’s Grace Jensen competes in a race during the Spring 2022 season. (Vanderbilt Athletics)

The Commodores Track and Field team traveled south to Gainesville, Florida, for the Florida Relays from April 1-2. Despite inclement weather, the team had many all-around great performances in its third outdoor meet this season. 

The team was put to the test by Mother Nature in Gainesville. Originally scheduled for a Saturday morning start, rain delayed Day 2 multiple times until the evening. 

“This weekend was a good meet for our athletes,” Althea Thomas, director of cross country and track and field, told “We endured the unpredictable weather of outdoor season and came away with several personal bests, three program top-10 performances and a third school record for Divine.”

Graduate Divine Oladipo continued her excellent year and added another record to the Vanderbilt books in the shot put. In the first event after the rain delay, Oladipo notched a 17.43-meter mark, good for third in the NCAA and first in the SEC this season.

Vanderbilt also was successful on the track. The Commodores A team placed sixth in the 4×400-meter relays, led by junior Kaira Brown’s 55.77 time.

In the 4×100-meter relay, run by Taiya Shelby, Haley Bishop, Jordan Smith and Madison Fuller, the Commodores placed ninth with a time of 46.18. Bishop and Fuller also placed well in the 100-meter dash, with times of 11.76 and 11.99, respectively. Bishop notched sixth place while Fuller finished 15th in a field of 31.

Team members also broke personal records in the 800. Senior Grace Jensen achieved an outdoor personal best time of 2:07.70, while leading the Commodores and placing 14th of 40. Haley Walker (2:12.67), Nicole Anderson (2:13.01), Ella Lambert (2:15.49) and Julia Rosenberg (2:18.89) also competed. It was Lambert and Rosenberg’s first time racing the 800.

While most of the action occurred on Day 2, a couple of Commodores placed on Day 1 as well. Once again, the sprinting duo of Bishop and Fuller placed high in the 200-meter—14th and 40th, respectively—out of 80 competitors. Sophomore Joslin Blair also placed fifth in the 3,000-meter steeplechase with a time of 10:53.81.  

It was overall a successful weekend for the Commodores, with records broken and adversity faced. This experience will be valuable moving forward, as the team takes on just three more meets before the SEC Championships on May 12.

“This team continues to go to battle together, supporting one another, and pushing each other to reach their full potential,” Thomas said. “They are anchoring down and gearing up for more to come this season.”

Vanderbilt will look to carry its positive momentum to Oxford, Mississippi, on April 8 and 9, where they will compete in the Joe Walker Invitational hosted by Ole Miss. 

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About the Contributor
Adam Weiss
Adam Weiss, Former Staff Writer
Adam Weiss (2024) is a sophomore from Colts Neck, N.J., in the College of Arts and Science. He is studying economics and math with a minor in data science. Adam is currently a staff writer for the Sports section. In his free time, he loves to play basketball and golf, while also hoping his New York Giants and Knicks can turn it around.
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