Snow doesn't deter women's track

By Meghan McGee published April 10, 2004

The University of Colorado Springs' Women's track and field team, had heavy competition this Saturday, but it was of a different nature - literally.

A brutal snow storm that forced the cancellation of most of the weekend's athletic events didn't deter meet officials or the Mountain Lions women's team from getting out there and competing at the Colorado College Invitational.

The 3000-meter Steeplechase, already one of the toughest events, was run first thing in the morning when the snow was at its worst. Despite sweeping and shoveling after each runner passed, race officials were unable to clear the snow from the track, leaving only small take-off and landing areas around the hurdles without deep slush. Chelsey Cerrillo did her best Iditerod imitation, establishing a track record in the process. Cerrillo's time of 11 minutes, 17.5 seconds won the race, the first time the event had been run at Colorado College.

"We train in (harsh weather) all the time," said Cerrillo. "Not the water jump though. The water jump I just had to do, and after it I just became numb."

Another remarkable event winner was Ashley Birger who took first in the mile run, with a time of 5:42.33. Birger finished the race with the snow hitting her face and a kick that immediately made it a memory.

"You just can't psych yourself out about the weather," said Birger. "I just tried to kick it really hard in the last 200 meters."

Tiffany Flint cleaned house in the Women's 200 meter and 400 meter dash, running a 200 meter time of 27:38, after racing a 1:01.55 in the 400.

Head coach Graeme Badger attributed the team's ability to perform despite the weather to mental toughness.

"We're just tough and nobody showed up today and whined about competing," said Badger. "They all know what's expected and that's mental toughness."

UCCS Players/Staff Featured

Ashley BirgerAshley BirgerSteeplechaseSo.
Ashley BirgerAshley BirgerSteeplechaseSo.
Ashley BirgerAshley BirgerSteeplechaseSo.
Ashley BirgerAshley BirgerSo.
Ashley BirgerAshley BirgerSo.
Ashley BirgerAshley BirgerSo.
Ashley BirgerAshley BirgerSo.
Chelsey CerrilloChelsey Cerrillo
Chelsey CerrilloChelsey CerrilloJr.
Chelsey CerrilloChelsey Cerrillo
Tiffany FlintTiffany FlintSprints
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