Hurt most of her freshman season, Lizzie Quackenbush announced herself as one of the GCAC’s best runners Sunday at the league’s indoor meet at University of Chicago.
A sophomore, Quackenbush contributed to two of Loyola’s three wins as the Ramblers captured their third consecutive conference championship. She finished first in the 800 meters in 2 minutes, 23.92 seconds and anchored the winning 4×400 relay team that clocked a 4:18.74.
“This was a big step up for Lizzie after not really competing last year,” Loyola head coach ChrisJon Simon said. “She’s a great athlete.”
The Ramblers totaled 137 points to top the 11-team field. They placed third or better in 12 of the 15 events, including five runner-up finishes.
“What’s so great is that everybody contributed,” Simon said. “No one had an off day.”
Senior and Illinois Wesleyan University-bound Addison Bendery was Loyola’s other individual winner, finishing first in the 400 (1:01.03). She won the event as a junior. Bendery placed second in the long jump (15 feet, 11 inches), third in the 60 (8.08) and third in the 200 (27.01).
“She’s an awesome talent,” Simon said. “She sets goals, but she’s always looking to go above and beyond. She’s a great competitor.”
Sophomore Sarah Jay took second in the 3,200 (12:07.98), and freshman Samantha Souffrant was the runner-up in the shot put (33-7 1/2).
The Ramblers have an extended break until they start the outdoor season April 6.
“Great to get the win,” Simon said. “Now, it’s time to regroup and prepare ourselves for the rest of the season.”
BOYS: Three Ramblers won individual conference championships Sunday at University of Chicago to lead Loyola to its second Catholic League title in a row.
Senior Jack Loveland finished first in the 400 meters in 51.61 seconds, while senior Eli Miller won the 800 in 2:04.81 and freshman Spencer Werner clocked a 4:37.47 to take top honors in the 1,600.
The Ramblers earned 103 points to best the 13-team field.
Junior Kieran Thompson took second in the high jump with a mark of 5 feet, 10 inches. Sophomore Spencer Dzyacky was the runner-up in the 3,200 with a time of 9:55.79. Dzyacky placed third in the 1,600 (4:39.13).
The boys team begins its outdoor season April 10.