By Rebecca Mckee
Over two days, Feb. 28 and March 1, McKendree University’s men and women track and field teams competed in the GLVC Division II indoor championship meet. With 11 teams competing on both sides, the competition was tough, and our athletes competed to the best of their ability; many had shining moments in the placing’s and new personal bests were set.
Although there were no medals won on the girl’s team, we had some great showings by the athletes. There were multiple top showings to score us points as well as a lot of our girls posting new personal bests in their various events. In the 800 meters, Karis Johnson barely missed the medal with a fourth place finish and time of 2:20. In the 3,000 meters, Hannah Inyart was able to finish in sixth place with a time of 10:27. Our Distance Medley Relay, consisting of Christine Cunningham, Christine Ackermann, Karis Johnson and Hannah Inyart, ran an exciting race. Finishing in fourth place with a time of 12:32.61, they were able to set a new school record, and also beat their previous time by over twenty seconds. In the field events, two athletes rose to the occasion as they participated in the triple jump. Mollie Bowman took fifth with a distance of 10.87 m (35’8”), while Asaiah Hooks took sixth with 10.41m (34’2”). The women ended up tenth overall in the team competition. While it may not have been the finish we had hoped, all our women did the best effort they could put forward and we are excited to see where we can go from here.
The men’s team came out strong and had many athletes prove they are a force to be reckoned with in the conference. In the 60m dash, Deonte Andresen took fifth place with a time of 7.11 while CJ James ran a time of 6.82 and finished as the champion of the 60m. Earlier in the season, CJ ran a NCAA DII auto time of 6.73 to ensure him a place in the National Competition for the 60m in a few weeks. With this win in the 60m, it also gave McKendree its third consecutive 60m win in the indoor GLVC Championships. In the 200 m, Donovan Friscia finished in sixth with a time of 22.84 while James, again, landed a first place finish with a time of 22.16. James was able to call himself the fastest man in the GLVC with both the 60m and 200m wins. Our men’s 4×400 meter relay team, consisting of Grayson Horton, Alexis Palmer, Moses Randich and Christopher Jackson, also rose to the occasion, finishing in third place with a 3:25.28 finish. The athletes in the field events also gave great performances and high finishes. In the high jump, Alex McCrite took second while Eric Imel took third, both clearing the height of 2.00m (6’6.75”). They both went for the National Qualifying mark, but unfortunately both barely missed clearing the height. In the long jump, Deonte Andresen finished in sixth with a distance of 6.61m (21’8.25”). Then in the shot put competition, Ryan Pearce threw 15.92 m (52’2.75”) and landed himself in second place. The men finished the competition in sixth place and were able to show that they have more to give and we hope to see them do even more in the outdoor season.
Overall, the track team had a successful weekend in Indianapolis competing in the indoor Championships. With some strong finishes, the team was able to show how great our athletes are. While not everything went as planned, (i.e. the bus being stuck in the parking lot and the team needing to push it out of the snow before heading off to compete for day two) the meet ended successfully. Now the teams can prepare for outdoor to make new personal bests and strive for greater success.