Track and field teams perform well at Stevens Point

By a two-point team margin, the UW-Eau Claire women’s track team took the Eastbay Invitational meet at Stevens Point Saturday with a first place finish overall. The men’s team took fourth in the meet.

Junior Liz Kooistra lead the women with first-place finishes in both the 200 and 400-meter races, setting the facility record on the 400 at 56.96 seconds. The women’s team also took first in the 800-meter relay.

Sophomore Amy Bachinski, who transferred to Eau Claire from UW-Stevens Point this year, ran on the winning relay in Saturday’s race. She said it felt really great to win the event and the entire meet at her old home track, as well as seeing Kooistra set the record.

“It was really encouraging to see her do so well,” Bachinski said.

Other point-winners for the women’s team include several distance runners. Junior Mary Palmer and sophomore Hannah Humbach finished second and third, respectively, in the mile run, and sophomore Elly Prunty took second in the 3000-meter run.

On the men’s side, freshman Logan Koerten helped the Blugolds with a first place finish in the long jump and a second place finish in the triple jump.

He said it was nice going back to Stevens Point, which is where he grew up, but that the men’s team could have finished a little stronger.

“I think the team could have done a little better,” he said, “but overall I think the performances we had were pretty good.”

Other men’s field competitors who contributed points include senior Al Oleson and sophomore Tim Lauer, who finished second and third, respectively, in the shot put. Junior Sam Johnson also took first in the 35-pound weight throw.

Throwing coach Paul Conlin said he was impressed with the men’s performances on Saturday.

“It was great to see both Al Oleson and Tim Lauer have really great days (Saturday),” Conlin said. “Both worked really hard in practice and it was great to see it pay off.”

He also mentioned the consistency of the women’s throwers, such as senior Amy Morse.

Both teams are looking forward to the conference meet, which is the last weekend in February, Conlin said. The teams will compete again next Saturday at UW-Platteville.