Luke Hare, Staff Writer
With the GNAC Championships quickly approaching, the Saints look to build off their home meet.
On April 13, the Saint Martin’s Track and Field team hosted the annual Jay Hammer Invitational in below average conditions. From the start of the day, the rain did not stop pouring down on the athletes, and throughout the day, the wind made its presence known. However, the weather did not stop the Saints from doing well in many different events.
Overall, the Saints took home first place in five different events and placed second in four events. After recovering from a recent injury, senior Jona Spiller took second place in the javelin. Spiller’s toss of 135-feet, 5-inches, which was just behind first place, was especially impressive considering it was her first action since the injury. It will be great for Spiller to have a couple weeks to recover and get as healthy as possible before the GNAC Championships on May 11-12 in Monmouth, Ore.
If you’ve heard the name Liz Larson multiple times, you’re probably not the only one. Larson dominated yet again in the hammer throw reaching 177-feet, 5-inches, which beat second place by almost 20 feet. This throw was enough to rank her fifth in the nation in the event. Ariya Kendrick also made a great showing on the 100m hurdles, placing third with her time of 15.44 seconds.
While the women had an impressive meet, the men were not about to be outdone. In the 400m race, Michael Russell was the only sprinter to break the 50 second mark, putting in a time of 49.94 seconds. He was not satisfied with just this performance, though. Russell went on to win the 200m as well, setting a time of 22.10 seconds. Following close behind was senior teammate Jackson Hand, with a time of 22.31 seconds to take home the second-place finish. Logan Armstrong, Josh Schulz, Hand, and Russell combined in the 4x100m relay and took first place in this competition with a time of 42.52 seconds. Andrew Olsin took home a respectable third place finish in the 10,000m race with a time of 32:49.92.
The Saints continued to dominate in the shot put, with Micah Au-Haupu placing first yet again with a mark of 44-feet, 5.25-inches. Cade Harris placed second in the men’s hammer, setting his personal record of 161-feet, 10-inches. Coming off a previous win at Western Washington, Craig Boyle took home second in the men’s pole vault with a mark of 14-feet, 11-inches.
In the earlier meeting at Western Washington, freshman Keshara Romain broke the school record in the women’s long jump with a distance of 18-feet, 7.75-inches, and also won the triple jump, with a mark of 37-feet, 0.5-inches. Freshman standout Tyler Cronk has also been qualified for the national championships since the first meet of the season when he cleared the mark of 7-feet, 0.5-inches.
Keep an eye out for the Saints in these next few weeks as they look to build off of their last few meets and continue to set the standard high. This will all need to be done as they hope to set personal marks at the GNAC Championships and hopefully lead to the national championships in the weeks to come.