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McClellan stars on Bison Summit League Championship team

FARGO -- The North Dakota State women's track and field team won its fifth consecutive Summit League Outdoor Championship title Saturday, May 12 at its home track, becoming the first league school to win five straight. The Bison amassed 193 points to edge out South Dakota with 164. NDSU is also the first school since Oral Roberts in 2006 to win the cross country, indoor track and outdoor track titles in the same school year.

Head coach Ryun Godfrey was voted Summit League Coach of the Year by the rest of the league's coaches. It was his fifth straight award.

The Bison won two titles on the final day of competition. Freshman Paige Stratioti won the 400 meters in a time of 54.69 seconds, defending the crown she won at the indoor championships. Melissa Kitching was third in the same event in a personal best 55.80 seconds, which ranks eighth in school history. Stratioti was also sixth in the 200 meters in 24.91 seconds.

In the final event of the meet, the Bison continued their dominance in the 4x400 relay as the team has won every 4x400 since joining the league in 2007-08. The team of Brittany Schanandore, Stratioti, Faith Kruchowski and Ashlynn Simon led from start to finish to take home the title in 3 minutes 42.92 seconds.

The Bison were bolstered by a 2-3-4 finish in the 800 meters. Simon took second in a personal best time of 2:08.07, which is sixth all-time at NDSU. Simon led most of the race, but was passed down the final backstretch by South Dakota's Emma Ladwig. Kruchowski was third in 2:10.08 and Schanandore was fourth in 2:11.24.

Schanandore led the Bison contingent in the 1,500 meters, placing second in a personal best time of 4:28.99. She was neck-and-neck with leader Kristen Radcliff of Oral Roberts coming into the final straightaway, but Radcliff was able to hold her off down the stretch. Her time is third in school history. Amy Jo Thorne's fifth place time of 4:30.86 is fifth all-time, while Maddie McClellan's sixth place time of 4:31.61 is eighth all-time.

In the triple jump, Katie Dockter posted a personal best mark by almost a foot, finishing second with a mark of 39 feet 5 ¼ inches.

NDSU also had three athletes earn points in the 100 meter hurdles. Deborah John earned bronze in 14.14 seconds, while Twila Moser was sixth in 14.70 seconds and Emily Stalpes was eighth in 14.83 seconds.

Ashley Heinze posted a personal best time of 1 minutes 2:04 seconds in the 400 meter hurdles to finish in the runner-up position. Kitching also earned a point after taking eighth in 1:10.11.

In the 5,000 meters, McClellan placed in her third event of the championships, finishing sixth in 17:22.75. Thorne was eighth in 17:30.69.

Emily Lesser finished fourth in the discus with a mark of 150 feet 4 inches to earn five points for the Bison. Katie Johnson's 10th place mark of 140-0 is tied for 10th all-time at NDSU.

The 4x100 relay team of Kitching, Stratioti, John and Kruchowski finished in fifth place in 47.55 seconds.

The Bison will look to build on their success in the league at the NCAA West Preliminary Round May 24-26 in Austin, Texas.

Team Scores

1. North Dakota State, 193

2. South Dakota, 164

3. Southern Utah, 114

4. Oral Roberts, 97

5. South Dakota State, 89

6. Western Illinois, 56.5

7. UMKC, 54

8. Oakland, 28.5

9. IPFW, 23

10. IUPUI, 0

NDSU Champions

400 meters - Paige Stratioti, 54.69

Steeplechase - Maddie McClellan, 10:19.39 (School, meet, facility record)

4x400 relay (Schanandore, Stratioti, Kruchowski, Simon) - 3:42.92