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Women's Outdoor Track & Field - Sat, May 27, 2017

A trio of podiums and eight All-American performances led the way for the Fighting Bee women to finish 23rd at the NAIA Outdoor National Championships.

It's the second year in a row the Fighting Bee women have had a top 25 finish at the national meet, and it marked the first time a relay has graced the awards stand.

The senior-laden 4x800 relay finished 8th in the finals, as Ashley Plumb, Nicole Woodall, Sarah Lampe and Molly Jo Smith earned the award. It was the first outdoor honor for Plumb, Woodall and Lampe, while Smith tallied her sixth award.

It wasn't long before Molly Jo Smith finished off her record-breaking career, taking 8th in the 400m hurdles on Saturday afternoon. Finishing her career as a 7-time All-American, Smith is the most decorated student in SAU history.

Smith, Lampe and Woodall wrapped up their careers as Bees, all multiple time All-Americans.

The women's race walk accounted for the majority of the Bees points as three different women earned All-American honors.

School record-holder Katharine Newhoff earned a bronze medal while Jenny Lopez and Cassandra Delgado took fifth and seventh respectively. Newhoff easily distanced herself ahead of fourth, while Delgado stayed in 11th place for the majority of the race before making moves in the final mile to jump onto the podium.

Lopez tallied her fifth award while Delgado picked up her fourth All-American recognition.

In other events, Brandi Hosford finished in 10th in the triple jump narrowly missing finals and the podium. Smith and Woodall ran in the 400 and 800m prelims respectively and failed to qualify for the finals.

Smith was honored as the St. Ambrose Champion of Character Award winner, while she joined Woodall, Lampe, Hosford, Katie Nelson, Ashlyn Rulis, Mary Perez, Chelsea Munday and Shelby Carlson as NAIA Scholar Athletes honored during the meet.

"We're graduating a great group of seniors who have led us and taken the program to a new place," SAU head coach Dan Tomlin said. "The neat thing is that the next group of that will carry the torch was here this week as well. They see what it takes to be podium-worthy athletes.

"Our race walkers were phenomenal and really competed with a lot of confidence. All of our underclassmen performed really well and now the expectation is to come here and finish high as a team.

"I'm also very lucky to have assistant coaches who took time out of their lives to come to Gulf Shores to make this trip possible. Traveling with 20 student-athletes and trying to coordinate meals and transportation takes a lot of work."