KINGSVILLE, Texas - In her first NCAA Outdoor Championship meet, Marisa Gwinner rose above the competition in the high jump to become Tiffin's first-ever female National Champion.
The freshman battled high winds to surpass a height of 1.73 meters on her second attempt after clearing the first two heights with ease. Three other athletes were able to clear the same height, but Gwinner did so in the least number of tries to claim the title.
After the final jumper knocked down the bar, Gwinner paused for a moment, unsure what her final place would be due to the four-way tie at the top. She then looked over to her jumps coach, Keith Reiter, and fellow teammates and realized that she held the tiebreaker and had just won the championship, igniting the celebration.
Fellow high jump teammate Dalaney Rogala was the first to embrace Gwinner after the magnitude of what the freshman had just achieved sunk in. Rogala also competed in the event, clearing a height of 1.64 to finish 19th.
The finish was also Gwinner's second All-American honor in as many tries, as she finished third in the high jump at the Indoor Championships earlier this year in March.
With the 10 points earned from an individual champion, the Tiffin women are tied for seventh heading into the final day of competition tomorrow. Nicole Berry is the final women's qualifier at nationals and will look to add to TU's total, seeded ninth in the shot put.