WINFIELD, Kan. – The Southwestern College women's track and field program opened the outdoor portion of its 2017 schedule on its home track Thursday afternoon. Junior Taylor Needham highlighted the team's outing with a national-qualifying mark in the 400 Meter Hurdles at the Southwestern Invitational on the Helmer Family Track inside Richard L. Jantz Stadium.

Despite a stiff southerly wind in her face on the home stretch, Needham posted an NAIA 'B' qualifying mark in the 400 Meter Hurdles, finished the race in 1:03.35, and won the event by nearly four seconds over her closest competitor. The Cheney, Kan., native also ran the anchor leg on the Lady Builder 4x400 Meter Relay team, which finished second to Cowley Community College by just .75 second.

Senior Bailey Collier led Southwestern's field events, and competed in both the high jump and the long jump. The Bixby, Okla., native finished second in the High Jump after clearing 1.60m (5'3"), then set a new personal best mark in the Long Jump, when she recorded a jump of 5.37m (17'7.5") and finished fourth in the 15-woman field. Her mark missed an NAIA qualifying mark by just five seconds.

Southwestern will return to the track on April 1, making the short trip south to Arkansas City for the annual Cowley Invitational.

2017 Southwestern Invitational
Southwestern Women's Results
200 Meter Dash
10. Taya' Buchanan (26.90)

400 Meter Dash
5. Taya' Buchanan (1:01.85)

800 Meter Run
3. Kari Blattner (2:20.28)
17. Tierney Sutton (2:52.66)

1,500 Meter Run
4. Justine Vogele (5:04.31)

5,000 Meter Dash
1. Justine Vogele (19:58.51)
2. Ashley Smith (20:29.78)

100 Meter Hurdles
7. Bailey Collier (15.70)
12. Shaley Shumate (17.03)

400 Meter Hurdles
1. Taylor Needham (1:03.35) **NAIA 'B' Qualifier**
6. Shaley Shumate (1:11.49)

3,000 Meter Steeplechase
2. Ashley Smith (12:27.34)

4x400 Meter Relay
2. Blattner/Vogele/Buchanan/Needham (3:58.96)

16. Shaley Shumate (24.77m – 81'3")

Long Jump
4. Bailey Collier (5.37m – 17'7.5")
8. Faith Gaddie (5.09m – 16'8.5")
14. Shaley Shumate (4.47m – 14'8")

Triple Jump
10. Megan Milch (10.23m – 33'6.75")
11. Faith Gaddie (10.07m – 33'0.5")

High Jump
2. Bailey Collier (1.60m – 5'3")
3. Megan Milch (1.55m – 5'1")