On a cold, rainy and windy day, the Valparaiso University men’s and women’s track and field teams hosted their fourth home meet in school history at the Warren G. Hoger Track. The men ended up with 180 points, receiving their first team victory this season. The women finished in second with 107 total points.
How It Happened
- In the field events, the Valpo men had two athletes place in first - junior Alexander Watson (Bolivar, Ohio/Tuscarawas Valley) and sophomore Drew McKissick Jr. (Naperville, Ill./Neuqua Valley). In the pole vault, Watson cleared the bar at 14’8” to grab 10 points for the Crusaders. McKissick earned his top honor in the javelin, receiving a distance of 164’2”.
- Junior Andrew Guzek (Valparaiso, Ind./Valparaiso) walked away from the Open with two second-place finishes in throwing events. He tossed the shot put 48’0 3/4" and had a distance of 161’0” in the hammer throw. Freshman Jake Rasawehr (Celina, Ohio/Celina) earned third in the discus event, garnering a distance of 137’10”.
- In the long jump, sophomore Malik Riley (Romeoville, Ind./Romeoville) captured the team’s best mark with a leap of 20’4 1/4". Teammates sophomore Aaron Clark Jr. and sophomore Collin McCullough (Hartland, Wis./Arrowhead) received fourth and sixth place results in the event as well. In triple jump action, freshman Nick Ricks (St. Louis, Mo./Lutheran North) and McCullough finished first (46’9”) and second (42’9 1/2") respectively.
- Teammates freshman Michael Collins (Neward, Del./Red Lion Christian Academy) and sophomore Tim Zange (Robins, La./Kennedy) finished two (10:08.41) and three (10:20.27) in the 3,000m steeplechase. Both runners improved on their season-best times in the event.
- Two Crusader hurdlers earned third-place results. Sophomore Quinten Holley (Goshen, Ind./Goshen) crossed the line in 16.84 in the 110m event and freshman Bryce Otterbach (Mendota, Ill./Mendota Township) had a time of 59.27 in the 400m race.
- Freshman Karl Hanke (Bridgman, Mich./Bridgman) led the squad in the 800m race. Sophomore Austin Henkel (Sublette, Ill./Amboy) paced Valpo in the 100m sprint. Junior Charles Banks (Valparaiso, Ind./Valparaiso) crossed the line first for the Brown and Gold in the 1,500m race. Leland Robertson took home the best mark in the 5,000m race. Junior Johnny Heagy (Pittsburgh, Pa./Mt. Lebanon) recorded the best height in the high jump for the Crusaders.
- In women’s competition, sophomore Nellie Bonham (Palos Hills, Ill./Stagg) captured a first-place nod in the shot put with a distance of 38’2”. Continuing her list of accomplishments of the afternoon, she scored ahead of the pack and earned first in the hammer (135’6”), just clipping teammate sophomore Abby Jankowski (Milwaukee, Wis./Greendale), who finished in second (133’3”). Jankowski beat half the field in the discus throw and earned third (115’7”).
- In the triple jump, Valpo freshman Anne Mou (Bloomingdale, Ill./Lake Park) and sophomore Chidimma Ozodi (South Milwaukee, Wis./South Milwaukee) finished first (34’11”) and fourth (32’7 3/4") respectively. The duo also earned marks in the long jump, with the rookie receiving second and the elder earning third.
- Sophomore Katherine Germann (Cincinnati, Ohio/Finneytown) garnered a fourth-place nod in the 3,000m steeple chase, crossing the line at 13:45.18.
- Junior Janelle Wigal (Chattanooga, Tenn./Chattanooga School for the Arts and Sciences) led the team in the 800m and 1,500m races. Freshman Jordan Houlihan (Hickory Hills, Ill./Amos Alonzo Stagg) earned the top result in the 200m sprint. Senior Imani Scott-Thompson (Akron, Ohio/Firestone) had the best height in the high jump for Valpo. Freshman Nicole Berneche (Glen Ellyn, Ill./Glenbard West) accounted for the best result in the women’s 5,000m race.
The Crusaders enter the postseason and begin competition at Youngstown State University with the Horizon League Outdoor Championships. The three-day meet begins on Friday, May 5 and will be on the track surrounding Farmers National Bank Field.