University of Southern Indiana junior distance runner Jennifer Comastri (Indianapolis, Indiana) and senior distance runner Hope Jones (Winders) (Cumberland, Indiana) ran to respective finishes of 13th and 16th in the women's 10,000 meters Thursday night at the NCAA Division II Outdoor Track & Field Championships.
Comastri ran in the lead pack throughout the first half of the race, finishing the 14th loop of the 25-lap competition in fifth place. However, despite posting her fastest 400-meter split of the race in the 15th lap, Comastri slipped three spots as the lead pack's pace quickened considerably.
The school-record holder in the women's 10,000 meters, Comastri slipped five more spots in the next lap and with the 5,000 meters still on her slate Saturday, she dropped her pace down and cruised to the 13th-place finish with a time of 35 minutes, 18.69 seconds.
Winders, meanwhile, found herself in a tightly-packed group early on in the race as her 400-meter splits were consistently around 82 to 84 seconds throughout the first seven laps. She slipped four spots to 17th during the eighth lap and maintained that position until moving up a spot during the 23rd lap. She finished strong in the final two laps as she posted her fastest split time in the last 400 meters to finish the race in 35:34.96.
University of Mary senior Ida Narbuvoll won the race with a brisk time of 33:36.59, while Azuza Pacific University senior Jennifer Sandoval was second with a time of 34:05.83.
Comastri returns to the track Saturday at 6:45 p.m. (CDT) when she competes in the finals of the 5,000 meters. She was fourth in the event at the 2021 NCAA II Indoor Championships back in March. Freshman distance runner Titus Winders (Mansfield, Tennessee) competes in the men's 5,000 meters Saturday at 2:40 p.m.