The Lawrence University Track and Field Team competed in their first indoor meet this Saturday at the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh Triangular. Both men’s and women’s teams took third with 52 and 50 points while Oshkosh won the competition with the men scoring 143 points and the women scoring 150.
Leading into the meet, the Vikings looked to create some momentum that would drive the team through the indoor season. “Our team goals for the meet were to focus on the controllables,” said sophomore distance runner Max Edwards. “Everybody needed to put their best foot forward in their event and in each lap, jump, and throw.”
Strong performances and big personal records early on are what creates the fire of motivation in these athletes as they train in these harsh Wisconsin conditions.
The Vikings got exactly that in several breakout performances, one being freshman Ethan Gniot’s third-place finish in the mile against an extremely talented Oshkosh squad. Although it was not a first-place finish, Gniot’s time of 4:25 is the 30th fastest time in the country and is easily the best mile time in the Midwest Conference.
Other men’s team performances of note were Edwards’s second-place finish in the 3,000 meters with a time of 9:23 and hurdle specialist JP Ranumas’s first-place victory in the 60 meter hurdles with a time of 8.69.
The women also put forth strong performances against formidable Oshkosh competitors. In a very impressive showing, freshman Noelle Hele was able to edge out Oshkosh’s Michelle Draxler by less than one tenth of a second to take second-place in the mile. Freshman Erin Schrobilgen and junior Clare Bruning took second and third in the 3,000 meter in respective times of 10:50 and 11:20.
Moving ahead, the Vikings look to continue their training and building their fitness. Training in the harsh cold that most Lawrentians can’t stand to be in for more than ten minutes at a time is all part of the life of a Lawrence track and field athlete. The team’s workouts are all built to maximize performance at the Midwest Conference Championships at the end of February.
“We will continue focusing on maintaining a high level of focus and intensity during our practices to make sure we are completing what we need to in a very intentional way,” Edwards explained. “Working hard to do the little things right throughout the day like hydrating, not skipping meals, and making time to take care of ourselves and our schoolwork to make sure that we are physically ready to go.”
The Vikings look forward to continuing to make improvements at their next meet this Saturday, Jan. 24 at the University of Wisconsin Stout Warren Bowlus Invitational.