Ratcliffe wins NCAA hammer throw, extending Princeton's championship streak

June 13, 2014 9:45 a.m.
Julia Ratcliffe

Julia Ratcliffe, a member of the Class of 2016, poses with her trophy after winning the 2014 NCAA women’s hammer throw.

Photos by Kristy McNeil, Princeton Athletics Communications

Julia Ratcliffe of the Class of 2016 won the hammer throw Wednesday, June 11, on the opening day of the NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Championships in Eugene, Oregon. She is the first NCAA champion in the history of the Princeton women's track and field team.

Ratcliffe capped an undefeated season during her sophomore year with a winning throw of 66.88 meters (219 feet, 5 inches).

"I'm just so thankful for all the people who helped me out to get here: my coach, my dad, my family, the Princeton team," said Ratcliffe, a native of New Zealand. "But I’m also really proud of myself because last year I kind of bombed out so to come back and win … it feels so good.”

The closest any member of the women's track and field team had previously come to an NCAA championship was in 2002, when Lauren Simmons of the Class of 2002 finished second in the 800-meter run.

Ratcliffe's victory extends Princeton athletics' streak of 43 years in which at least one individual or team has won a national championship.

Julia Ratcliffe

Ratcliffe winds up for a hammer throw during the NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships on Wednesday, June 11, at Eugene, Oregon.