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Track and field closes out day one of four-meet weekend

Friday, April 04, 2014

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – After a long day of four vigorous competitions, the Lipscomb track and field squads are half-way through their busy weekend.

The Lady Bisons competing at the Stanford Invitational ran well on day one, but not as smooth as expected.

"I was happy with our Stanford performances for the women, three for three with personal records and a new school record,” said Bill Taylor, director of track and field. “I didn't think the girls looked as strong or crisp as normal, so to get personal records despite is very encouraging.”

Dani Walker completed the 5000 meters in 16:30.55 for a fourth-place finish. Madi Talbert took ninth in the 5000 meters finishing the race in 16:39.88 while Sally Larson crossed the line in 16:55.05 for a 10th-place finish in her section.

"Dani's time will most likely get her in the preliminary round of nationals,” Taylor said. “We are going to have some tough decisions at the end of the season since she will most likely be qualified for the national championship preliminaries in the 800 meters, 1500 meters, and 5000 meters.”

Walker wasn’t the only one to break a school record in the 5000 meters, Freshmen Juan Gonzalez and Christian Freeman both surpassed the outdoor school record for the men at the San Francisco State Distance Carnival with Gonzalez claiming the new record in 14:30.22 and Freeman posting a time of 14:30.67.

“Juan and Christian ran brilliantly,” Taylor said. “It was awesome to watch them contend for the win all the way to the finish.”

Taylor believes the men ran well at San Francisco State, while the girls seemed to have encountered some issues.

"The girls at San Francisco State really struggled,” Taylor said. “That was surprising.

“I haven't had a chance to talk with them in detail. I am curious about what happened and am trying to figure out future solutions. All three girls can run in the mid-16s this season.”

The Florida Relays also seemed to go well. Tucker Peabody ran a season-best in the 100 meters with a time of 10.46 while Colin Dempster ran a season-best in the 400 meters securing a time of 47.80.

Dempster continues to edge closer and closer to locking in a new school record in the 400 meters.

The cold weather at the EIU Big Blue Classic proved to be a challenge to those participating in the meet.

 “The kids dealt with some pretty ‘northern’ outdoor early season conditions at EIU,” said Luke Syverson, assistant track and field coach. “Temperatures were in the low 30s with 20 mph winds so times were quite a ways off from where we want or expect.”

Given the colder conditions, Syverson felt the runners did well and at least learned a lesson about being mentally tough.

“I think Tessa (Hoefle), Kaitlyn (Llewellyn), and Hannah (Munyan) ran fairly well in the 5K,” Syverson said. “I think the effort was there across the board.

“The team is looking forward to Saturday and what is supposed to be at least a little warmer day.” 

Hoefle led the pack with her finishing time of 17:55.84 placing her fifth in the 5000 meters.