NASHVILLE, Tenn. – The Miami University women’s track and field team earned 14 top-five finishes in its 2014 outdoor season opener at the Vanderbilt Black & Gold Invitational hosted by Vanderbilt University at its track complex.

Junior Charlotte Myers led the RedHawks during the second and final day of the meet, winning the 400m dash in 55.80, beating out Missouri State’s Althia Maximillien who took second in 55.90.

In further track action, senior Erica Howes took runner-up in the 2000m steeplechase, clocking a career-high time of 7:01.40, five seconds faster than her previous personal-best she had set at last season’s Black & Gold meet. Freshman Lauren Hoover then placed within the top 10 in the race, finishing ninth in 7:25.02.

Senior Erica Mudd led Miami in the 100m hurdles, finishing fourth with a clocked time of 14.71, while freshman Alexus Jimson-Miller took ninth in her first outdoor meet of her collegiate career, finishing with a time of 15.03. In the 400m hurdles, sophomore Kathie Wollney finished fourth in a time of 1:03.89, followed by senior Xerina Hughey who took fifth on minute later in 1:04.93. Freshman Tessa Brooks also had a strong start in her first outdoor meet as a RedHawk, placing ninth in the race in 1:08.95.

In the 800m run, sophomore Laura Bess earned the fastest time for Miami, finishing fourth in 2:12.72, while junior Taylor Wickware finished on Bess’ heels in fifth in 2:12.85. Sophomore Megan Beaver (2:14.60) and freshman McKenna Kiple (2:15.30) also finished in the top 10, taking eighth and ninth, respectively.

The RedHawks had strong finishes in the 3000m run, starting with junior Jess Hoover who finished seventh in 9:57.55. Junior Anna Lamb followed in 10th, clocking a time of 10:01.93, while junior Melissa Girgis took 15th in 10:20.21.

Junior Adaora Anunike earned Miami’s best finish in field action, taking third in the discus with a mark of 43.11m, followed by freshman Olivia Cummings who rounded out the top 10 with a throw of 36.01m. In the long jump, junior Jasmin Watts finished fourth with a mark of 5.66m, followed by Mudd who took fifth in a jump of 5.63m. Freshman Ashley Frahm then finished ninth in the javelin with a throw of 24.32m.

In relay action, the RedHawks took third in the 4x100m relay, clocking a time of 47.95. In the 4x400m relay, Miami’s “A” team finished runner up in 3:58.69, while Miami’s “B” team took third in 4:05.07.

The RedHawks will return home Friday and Saturday, April 4-5 to host the Miami Invitational at George Rider Track.