Competing in the Wildcat Indoor Invite at Indiana Wesleyan University on Saturday, members of the men’s track team set a third school record, while individuals on the women’s track team continued to position themselves for national competition.
“Although the meet was used with an emphasis on individual performances for the Maple Leafs,” said Coach Rick Clark, “the women’s team still finished sixth, while the men’s team placed ninth.”
Deanna Kronk, a senior, hit NAIA qualifying marks in both the shot put (40′ 11″) and the weight throw (51′ 6 1/2″) for the third consecutive week. “Deanna had another fine meet in the throws,” said Clark. “[She won] the shot put and finished runner-up in the weight throw with a season best toss that should move her up in the NAIA listings.”
Laura Harnish, a senior, continued her strong indoor track season, qualifying for the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics Indoor Nationals in two more events. “Laura had an outstanding meet on the track, blazing to an automatic NAIA qualifying mark in the mile where her 5:13.52 placed her third,” Clark said. “She came back later in the meet for her first 3000 meter of the season, racing to a close runner-up finish (10:28.41), but in a time that also hit the NAIA automatic mark.”
Despite primarily focusing on competing the pentathlon, Abri Houser, a senior, again hit the NAIA qualifying mark in the 60 meter hurdles with a personal season best time of 9.19 seconds.
On the men’s side, Samuel Chege, a senior, had another dominant performance. Chege finished first in the 800 meters with a 1:55.49 time that automatically qualified him for nationals. Chege’s effort shattered Justin Wikerd’s 2001 record time (1:58.70) by three seconds.
David Rumsey, a senior, barely missed the NAIA qualifying time in the mile, finishing third with a time of 4:24.18.
The men’s and women’s track and field teams will compete in the Boilermaker Invite in West Lafayette on Saturday.