Track and Field competes at NAIA Indoor National Championships

Eva Marta, Staff Writer

March 3-6 were the NAIA Indoor National Championships for the men and women’s track and field teams. The women’s competitions were scheduled on Wednesday and Friday and the men’s events on Thursday and Saturday so fewer individuals would be in the facility each day. The meet was held in Yankton, South Dakota, and was the last meet of the indoor track season. 

On days one and two, fourth-year Seth Wilmoth finished by tying for sixth place and earned NAIA All-American honors for pole vaulting. Wilmoth’s first clearance on his opening height was at 4.70 meters, which is about 15 and a half feet, and his next height was at 4.85 meters, which is just under 16 feet. Two Warrior men’s relays teams qualified for the finals. The first team to qualify was the 4×800-meter relay team, made up of first-year John Baker, first-year Danny Rubin, second-year Jason Peterson and first-year Zola Sokhela. They completed the 16-lap course with a time of 7:52.95. They finished fourth in the first heat, which is the fastest race, and were eighth overall. The second relay team to qualify was the distance medley relay (DMR) in which Rubin, second-year Jarad Harper, Peterson and Sokhela finished second in the second heat. Their time of 10:17.66 was the third-fastest time overall. This race consists of a 1200-meter leg, followed by a 400-meter leg, then 800 meters, and concludes with 1600 meters. 

On Wednesday, second-year Madden Hundley finished second in the first heat of the mile, with a time of 5:15.51. She was sixth-fastest overall. Fourth-year Kristen Morhoff also competed in her first track and field championship race. She barely missed the cut in the 600-meter run and finished in 10th place overall with a time of 1:39.45. 

Wilmoth saw this championship as a learning opportunity so he knows what he has to work on over the next few months. “I have my sights set on another National title in May, but for now I’m trying to focus on one meet at a time and enjoy these last few months I have the privilege to compete.”

Hundley spoke on how she felt about her race, saying, “I am really excited about my mile time, but I think I am most proud of the way that I competed with the other NAIA runners. As a sophomore, I feel like my confidence as a competitor has really just improved with more racing experience and training.”

On days three and four, the men’s relay teams picked up two All-American honors with a 7:47.84 first place time and that team was the national runner-ups, taking second with a time of 10:09.66. The women’s team earned two All-American titles. Hundley earned the honor in the mile run and Sydney Marr got her second All-American designation in the 25-pound weight throw, placing third overall.

The outdoor track and field season is up next and the first meet is March 25-27, which will be here at Westmont. Good work and good luck, Warriors!

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