BOWLING GREEN, Ky. – Sophomore thrower Jessica Mattsson unleashed the best hammer throw of her young Bruin career Friday to reclaim the Belmont women's track and field school record in the event.
Mattsson (Tierp, Sweden) covered an impressive 57.16 meters (187-6) at Western Kentucky's Hilltopper Relays, bypassing the previous Belmont best by more than two full meters. The throw is the top mark in the Ohio Valley Conference so far this spring and was just six inches short of gold on Friday for second-place Mattsson.
Mattsson's previous best ever hammer throw also set a school record at the time when she threw for 54.57 meters (179-0) at last year's Clyde Littlefield Texas Relays. Just three weeks later though, the now-graduated Alyssa Andersen re-set the record in 54.85 meters (179-11) at the Georgia Tech Invitational to bump Mattsson from the top spot.
Friday's distance would be enough to qualify for the NCAA East Preliminary Championships if the regular season ended today. The top 48 marks earn a spot at Regionals with Mattsson's currently sneaking in at No. 46.
Mattsson was one of three Belmont women competing Friday at the WKU meet, but not the only highlight. Senior Karly Hibbard (Edmonds, Wash.) placed fifth in the shot put. Sophomore Maja Gustafsson (Västerås, Sweden) was also 14th in the event.
The Hilltopper Relays continue on Saturday starting at 9 a.m. with the discus event.
5. Karly Hibbard, sr. – 13.00m (42-8)
14. Maja Gustafsson, so. – 10.39m (34-1.25)
2. Jessica Mattsson, so. – 57.16m (187-6)*^