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Calvin Track and Field Athletes Make Final Push For Nationals at Last-Chance Meets

Saturday, May 22, 2010

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http://www.raceberryjam.com

Down to their chance to qualify for next week’s NCAA III Outdoor Track and Field Championships, several Calvin athletes came up big on Friday. In a meet hosted by Augustana University in Rock Island, Illinois, Calvin throwers Leigha Oberle (Grand Rapids/Grand Rapids Christian HS) and Sarah Reasoner (Cambridge, MN/Cambridge-Isanti HS) likely solidified their positions in the discus for next week’s national meet as Oberle uncorked a season-best and NCAA III provisional qualifying throw of 145-8 while Reasoner won the competition with a season-best and NCAA III provisional qualifying throw of 153-11.

Over at the Gregory Invitational hosted by North Central College in Naperville, Illinois, two steeplechasers likely punched their tickets to next week’s national meet with strong NCAA III provisional qualifying times as sophomore Nick Kramer (Dyer, IN/Illiana Christian HS) won the men’s steeple in a time of of 9:08.13 with junior Ben VanWyk (Sussex, NJ/High Point HS) close behind in second with a provisional time of 9:08.27. Along with senior teammate Aaron Goodman (Milwaukee, WI/Milwaukee Lutheran HS) who clocked a provisional qualifying time of 9:08.53 last week, the Knights have a shot at sending three men’s steeplechasers to the national meet for the first time in school history.

Also clocking a provisional qualifying time in the women’s steeplechase at North Central on Friday was junior Gretchen Braymer (Erie, PA/Collegiate Academy) in a time of 10:54.09. Braymer already has a time of 10:54.07 set last week which will place her on the bubble for qualifying. Also producing a provisional qualifying time on Friday was senior Nicole Farr (Warrenville, IL/Warrenville-South HS) with a season-best effort of 11:02.65.

In the women’s 400 meter hurdles at North Central, junior Rachel Boerner (Bergenfield, NJ/Hillcrest Academy) had another solid outing, recording an automatic qualifying time of 1:01.70 for her third-fastest performance in the event this spring. Boerner also ran a leg on Calvin’s 4x400 meter relay team that recorded a season-best and NCAA III provisional qualifying time of 3:52.56 that will leave the team most likely on the bubble for making the national field next week. Joining Boerner on the relay were senior Katie Roelofs (Grand Rapids/) and sophomores Kaitlin Diemer (Caledonia/South Christian HS) and Jordan Gabrielse (Allendale/Unity Christian HS).

Diemer also had a strong night in the 800 meters, clocking a season-best time of 2:15.58. Teammate Alison Tuuk (Grand Rapids/Grand Rapids Christian HS) also had a season-best time of 2:16.26. In addition, sophomore Jodi Hoekstra (Homer Glen, IL/Chicago Christian HS) just missed a provisional qualifying time in the 1,500 meters, recording a season-best time of 4:38.87.

Another big highlight for the Calvin men’s team at North Central was the performance of senior Kelby McClelland (Mercer, PA/Mercer Area HS) who took second in the 110 high hurdles with a season-best and strong NCAA III provisional qualifying time of 14.59 that stands a good chance at sending him on to the NCAA III Championships for the second time. McClelland also earned a trip to the national meet in the 110 high hurdles as a junior in 2007 but then elected to take two years off from school before returning to complete his Calvin degree and use his final year of track eligibility this year.

Other notables at North Central included senior Joel Klingenberg (Hamilton, ON/Bradenton Christian HS) taking second in the javelin (190-4), senior Zack VanderLaan (Lansing/Holt Central Lutheran HS) taking second in the long jump (22-11), sophomore Carson Sterchi (Crystal Lake, IL) turning in a season-best time of 1:54.80 in the 800 meters.

The NCAA III Outdoor Track and Field Championships field is scheduled to be released Sunday afternoon on the Web site: Raceberryjam.com

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