Tennessee's Phoebe Wright leads the way. Photo by Kim Spir

Tennessee defended its title with a 17:14.91 victory over Villanova.

On the opening leg Oregon’s Nicole Blood went to the lead on the third lap, and handed off first with Chanelle Price of Tennesee closing fast, followed by Villanova, Wake Forest and Columbia.

On the second leg, Oregon’s Alex Kosinski maintained a 5-meter lead for the first two laps, with Tennessee’s Jackie Areson—who anchored the Lady Vols winning DMR yesterday—and Villanova’s Nicole Schappert slowly closing down on her. Areson and Schappert passed Koskinski on the final lap, quickly separating themselves at the exchange.

Tennessee’s Brittany Sheffey and Nova’s Bogdana Mimic ran comfortably on the third leg, with Oregon’s Anne Keseslering desperately trying to close the gap. Sheffey and Mimic had an answer, pulling away in the final 100.

As the anchor leg began, Phoebe Wright (Tennessee) led Sheila Reid (Villanova) by five meters, with Oregon’s Jordan Hasay another 30 meters back. Hasay made a big move to cover the gap and was right on their heels at the bell lap. But it clearly took all her energy just to get there, and Wright and Reid pulled away from her down the backstretch. Reid put on an impressive kick but she couldn’t quite match the speed of Wright, the reigning NCAA Indoor champion in the 800, who won by half a second.

Tennesse (17:14.91) and Nova (17:15.41) ran the fourth and fifth fastest times ever at the Penn Relays. Oregon was third in 17:25.27.

Full results can be found here.

Sheffey, Wright, Price and Areson on their victory lap. Photo by Kim Spir