By Carly Fehler, UWEC Sports Information
ST. PAUL, Minn. (blugolds.com) - The University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire Track and Field teams certainly showed up this weekend for The Showcase meet held at St. Thomas on Friday.
Men's Results | Women's Results
The women were once again led by their senior sprinters, Jessie Reineck and Jess Rupnow who delivered the 1-2 punch in the open 400 for the second week in a row, running 58.11 and 58.77, respectively. That ranks each of them 9th and 30th in the country.
Sarah Glidden continues her impressive indoor campaign with another win this weekend, this time in the long jump, with a mark of 5.39. That's good for a top 30 mark in the country. She was also the top NCAA Division III athlete in the 200 meter dash, with a time of 25.55. That is not only a personal record for her, but earns her the fifth spot in the country. The sweet and charismatic junior is currently ranked in the top ten in five different events nationally.
Captain Sam Anderson led the field events Friday, finishing as the the top Division III thrower, with a toss of 12.47 in the shot and 17.50 in the weight toss. Her mark in the weight toss ranks her 7th in the country, and will likely punch her ticket to the national meet in Iowa.
On the men's side, Jimmy Paske lead the sprinters with a second place finish in both the 60 (7.05) and 200 meter dash (22.97). The men's 4x400 meter relay of Cody Andrus, Connor Drexler, Ryan Graham, and Kevin Brooks captured the win with a time of 3:26.58.
Junior Matt Dietlin won the men's high jump with a mark of 1.96 meters.
The story of the meet is once again narrated by the men clad in tiny shorts, the beloved distance crew. Ryan Graham started it off winning the 800 with a time of 1:56.70. Then, the enigmatic trio of Josh Thorson (14:21.88), Darin Lau (14:31.22), and Nick Petersson (14:32.18) swept the 5k with a 1-2-3 finish once again. Those impressive times currently rank these men second, fourth, and fifth in the country respectively. The men were all smiles after the lengthy race, and as Coach Dan Schwamberger put it, "these guys are on a different level,". That level will only continue to rise in the coming weeks, which is a little scary for anyone not wearing blue and gold.
In typical fashion, big man Alex Mess took over the circle with a double win in the shot put and weight toss. His shot put mark of 17.14 ranks him second in the country, and his toss of 18.08 in the weight is only his second time over 18 meters. He currently sits 3rd in the nation in that event. 'Messy' continues to build momentum heading into the crucial last weeks of the indoor season.
Any doubts about this team's strength after a crowning season last year during indoor, followed by another title this year in cross country, have been quieted week after week by this dangerous team. The WIAC conference championships are just two weeks away, with the NCAA Indoor National Championships a mere month away. The teams will travel to Steven's Point next weekend for the Pointer Big Dog Invite on Saturday.