The Notre Dame track and field squad competed for the first time in 2023 at the Michigan Invitational. On Friday, the Irish competed against a host of schools, including Michigan, Michigan State, Eastern Michigan, Madonna and Toledo. Notre Dame claimed a pair of first-place finishes in women’s high jump and long jump. Those performances sparked a strong team effort featuring 16 top-five finishes. Sophomores Madison Schmidt (high jump) and Kendall Burgess (long jump) took home victories for Notre Dame.
Senior sprinter Shae Douglas started the Irish off strong by qualifying for the finals in the 60m sprint. She ran a 7.74 in the finals to secure a third-place finish. Douglas later earned another podium finish in the 200m, delivering a personal best of 24.94 seconds to claim third place.
Sophomore hurdler Alaina Brady represented one of two Irish sprinters in the 60m hurdle finals, and she brought home a second-place finish, finishing in 8.61 seconds. Brady later added a third-place finish in the long jump. Freshmen Reese Sanders and Remy Finn added top-five finishes for the Irish in the 600m and 400m, respectively.
That set the stage for the Irish to dominate in the jumps. Burgess won the long jump with a leap of 5.71 meters. Brady and Finn followed with top-six efforts. Schmidt led a quartet of Irish jumpers to sweep the top four in the high jump. Schmidt’s winning jump of 1.71m edged sophomore Jadin O’Brien, senior Arianna Martinez and junior Sarah Flight.
O’Brien struggled early in the day, disqualifying herself from the finals in two sprints. She ended her meet strong with the high jump effort, as well as a third-place finish in the shot put.
On the men’s side, the Irish only competed in the 400m. Three sprinters participated, led by sophomore Joey Dobrydney’s fourth-place effort. He finished with a 49.87, while senior sprinter Luke Phillips took eighth with a personal best of 50.49 seconds.
The Michigan Invitational marked the beginning of the real indoor season for the Irish. They had previously competed in a pair of Invitationals at the beginning of December. However, they’ll compete in six straight weekends leading into the ACC Championships at the end of February. Notre Dame continues that stretch by hosting the Notre Dame Invitational next Saturday. It’s one of three events the Irish will host this season.
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