Track teams get tune up

With a week to go before the WIAC conference meet, the weekend was a busy one for the track and field teams.

The men’s team competed in the Loras Open in Dubuque, Iowa and sent two relay teams to the Drake Relays in Des Moines. The women’s team participated in the La Crosse Classic.

Juniors David Hanson and John Brumund-Smith teamed up with seniors Scott Whirry and Rich Maleniak to make up the men’s sprint medley relay team at the Drake Relays. The relay team finished in 8th place Friday in a strong field.

“We were hoping to get a couple of top-10 finishes,” coach Scott Steuernagel said. “We were happy with the 8th place finish.”

Junior Chad McCartney and sophomore Matt Glover joined Brumund-Smith and Maleniak on the distance medley relay team. That team finished 15th in the event, which was held on Saturday.

“It’s just great to have the opportunity to run in the Drake Relays,” Steuernagel said. “It’s a chance to compete against some great competition.”

After competing on Friday, Whirry joined the rest of his team in Dubuque on Saturday to compete in the Loras Open. Whirry jumped 21 feet, 3.25 inches to take second in the long jump.

Junior Tony Donatell also got a second place finish for the Blugolds, taking second in the 200-meter dash in 22.92 seconds. Junior Nate Obenhoffer also placed in the long jump, finishing 8th.

Steuernagel said he was happy with sophomore Matt Goertz, freshman Eric Jajtner and junior Joel Fredericks, who finished third, fourth and eighth, respectively, in the 3000-meter steeplechase.

Steuernagel said he was also pleased with senior Matt Beno, who took third in the hammer throw with a personal-best throw of 147-5.

While there were no team scores for the men’s competitions, the women finished third at the La Crosse Classic, behind first-place UW-Madison and second-place UW-La Crosse.

Sophomore Breanna Mc Mullen got another first place finish for the Blugolds, winning the 400 meter dash in 58.40 seconds.

Sophomore Katie Miller recorded a second and a third-place finish for the Blugolds, getting second in the 200 m dash and third in the 100 m dash.

Because of bad weather, half of the events took place indoors at the La Crosse Classic. Miller ran the 100 m outside, but ran the 200 m inside.

“It wasn’t so bad running inside,” Miller said. “I was pretty happy with how I did. Our team is looking really good.”

Miller said the women are hoping for a third-place finish or better in next week’s WIAC Outdoor Conference Championships, which will also take place in La Crosse. The women took fourth in the indoor championships this year and in last year’s outdoor championships.