Photos: Up close with the Penn Relays steeplechase

College and Olympic Development men and women competed in the 3000m Steeplechase event at the Penn Relays at the University of Pennsylvania's Franklin Field on April 25, 2013. (Hillary Petrozziello / Staff Photographer)

I've long been fascinated by the steeplechase at the Penn Relays, and I know I'm not alone.

As the sun sets on Thursday night, what's left of the crowd migrates over to the northeast corner of Franklin Field and casts its gaze upon a big pit of water.

Over the course of an hour, dozens of runners go up over a hurdle and come down with a splash. It's one of the Relays' most entertaining scenes.

Five years ago (has it really been that long?), I tried to do a photo gallery of some of the best splashdown moments I could capture. But I didn't have the professional-level equipment required to do the event justice.

So this year, I brought staff photographer Hillary Petroziello along. It was her first Relays, and thus her first steeplechase. Which is to say that it was quite an experience for both of us.

She got great pictures, though. Check them out above.

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