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Track and Field Teams Wrap Up MIAA Titles

Friday, May 01, 2009

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Final MIAA Track & Field Championships Results

ALBION—The MIAA championship trophies are once again headed back to Calvin College. Both Calvin track and field teams wrapped up outright league crowns on Friday by finishing in first place at the MIAA Field Day hosted by Albion College.

The Calvin men recorded a first place score of 244.5 points, finishing 61 points ahead of runner-up Hope. On the women’s side, Calvin rolled to a first place score of 322 points, nearly 110 points ahead of runner-up Hope.

The MIAA title for the Calvin men’s team is its 34th overall and its 16th straight league crown. The league title for the women’s is its 20th straight which ranks as the longest active championship streak in MIAA women’s athletics history.

Calvin took first place in five events on Friday with senior Jed Christiansen (Greenville, PA) leading the way with wins in the 1500 and 5,000 meters. Other individual winners for the Calvin men included sophomore Ken Echtinaw (Caledonia HS) in the discus (146-11), sophomore Eric Michel (Naperville, IL) in the pole vault (14-1 1/4), and senior Nate DeHaan (South Christian HS) in the 3,000 meter steeplechase (9:19.93). The MIAA title by DeHaan was his third straight in the steeplechase. Michel’s title was his second straight in the pole vault.Trine 6

Depth proved to be a major factor for the Calvin men’s team as they built a 41 point lead heading into the running events on Friday. Echtinaw led a 1-2-5 Calvin finish in the discus as sophomore Joel Klingenberg (Hamilton, ON) was second (146-6) and freshman Aaron Clark (Comstock Park HS) fifth (142-7). In the pole vault, Michel was part of three Calvin athletes that reached the finals as sophomore Erik Brands.finished tied for fourth (12-10) and Both finished eighth (12-4 1/2). The Knights also scored 13 points in the triple jump as junior Corey Velgersdyk (Bloomington, MN) was second (44-1 1/2), freshman Willem Both sixth (41-6) and junior Nate DeJong seventh (41-5 3/4).

DeHaan then paced a 1-2-5-6 Calvin finish in the steeplechase with junior Aaron Goodman (Milawukee, WI) finishing second (9:23.21), sophomore Ben Van Wyk (Sussex, NJ) finishing fifth (9:52.74) and senior Matt Logan (Fort Wayne, IN) finishing sixth (10:04.55).

“We got off to a good start in the field events today which was very important,” said Calvin head track coach Jong-il Kim of the Calvin men’s team. “Then our steeplechase runners continued the momentum. I was very proud of the way our athletes competed. It took a team effort to win this championship.”

Sophomore Alex Wrobel (Arden Hills, MN) also had a big day, finishing second in the 800 meters (1:55.86) and 1500 meters (4:02.43) while anchoring Calvin’s 4x400 meter relay team to a second place time of 3:21.66. Wrobel was joined on the relay by freshman Thad Winkle (South Christian HS), freshman Carson Sterchi and junior Zach VanderLaan (Holt, MI).

In the 5,000 meters, Christiansen led a 1-2-4-6 Calvin finish with senior Erik VanKampen (Elmhurst, IL) taking second (15:05.25), freshman Nick Kramer (Dyer, IN) placing fourth (15:18.66) and senior Andrew Stutzman (Kutztown, PA) sixth (15:32.37). The title by Christiansen was his third in the last four years in the 5,000.

Other notables for the Calvin men included junior Kyle Ramthum (Dearborn) finishing third (57.30) and freshman Miles Colago (Anoka, MN) placing fifth (58.90) in the 400 meter hurdles.  Calvin’s 4x100 meter relay team of Clay Wielard (Lisle, IL), George Ahiome (Kano, Nigeria), VanderLaan and Velgersdyk took a strong third with a time of 43.61.

In the women’s competition, Calvin gradually built its lead throughout the day. Senior Julie Bratt (Lynden, WA) was one of the big highlights for the Knights, winning the triple jump with an MIAA record leap of 37-7 1/4, breaking the previous MIAA record of 36-10 1/2 set by Lorilyn Vogel in 2005. Bratt also won the event for the fourth straight year, becoming the first four-time triple jump champion in MIAA women’s track and field history. She is also just the 12th four-time event champion in MIAA women’s track and field history.

Senior Lauren Bergstrom (Rochester, MN) also established a new MIAA record, winning the 800 meters with a time of 2:11.75, breaking the previous record of 2:12.85 set by Hope’s Jennifer Price in 2001. The 800 meter title was her third straight. Bergstrom was a double-winner, claiming the 1500 meters for the third straight year with a time of 4:44.49.

Another double winner for Calvin was junior Elizabeth Smit (Kirkland, WA) who won the 3,000 meter steeplechase (11:01.78) and 5,000 meters (18:10.82). Smit led a 1-2-34 Calvin finish in the steeple with junior Gretchen Braymer (Erie, PA) taking second with an NCAA III provisional and career-best time of 11:06.08 while junior Nicole Farr (Wheaton, IL) was third (11:30.42) and senior Jesi Hale (Gallup, NM) fourth (11:37.04).

Smit also led a 1-2-3-5 Calvin finish in the 5K with junior Sarah Dugan (Freeland) finishing second (18:11.81), junior Mary Tolsma (Hawthorne, NJ) placing third (18:14.64) and senior Kelly Edwards (Grand Blanc) finishing fifth (18:19.68).

Sophomore Sarah Reasoner (Cambridge, MN) also claimed her second individual league title in as many days, winning the shot put with a throw of 41-8, one day after winning the MIAA discus title.

Calvin also had a huge afternoon in the pole vault as junior Joy Leach (Charlottsville, VA) took first place (11-2 1/2), freshman Kelly Veldkamp (Grand Rapids Christian HS) second (10-11 1/2), junior Carla Lindemulder (Lansing, IL) fourth (10-11 1/2) and junior Casey Herman (Libertyville, IL) fifth (9-11 1/4).

Other individual winners for Calvin included junior Heather Koning (Kalamazoo Christian HS) in the 400 meters (57.72) and sophomore Rachel Boerner (Bergenfield, NJ) in the 400 meter hurdles (1:05.85). Calvin’s 4x400 meter relay team of senior Kristen Van Sickel (Pittsburgh, PA), junior Katie Roelofs (Grand Rapids, Mich.), Boerner and Koning took first place with a time of 4:00.88.

“I was very pleased with our women’s team,” said head coach Jong-il Kim. “We received contributions from many different athletes. They competed hard and I am very proud of them.”

Other notables for the Calvin womenís team included Roelofs placing third in the 400 meters (59.27) while Van Sickel was fourth (59.28) and freshman Kaitlin Diemer (South Christian HS) seventh (1:01.13). Boerner added a third place finish in the 100 meters (12.79) while senior Laura Jackson (Decatur, IL) was second in the 800 meters (2:19.44) while sophomore Alison Tuuk (Grand Rapids Christian HS) was fourth (2:21.40) and freshman Rebecca Hiemstra (Dusseldorf, Germany) was fourth (2:23.76). Tuuk was also third in the 1500 meters (4:48.63) and Hiemstra fourth (4:51.21).

In addition, freshman Kelly Peterson (Anoka, MN) was third in the triple jump (33-6 3/4), Koning was third in the 200 meters (26.08), sophomore Kim Wigboldy (Chandler, AZ) was third in the javelin (115-8) and senior Annika Krygsman (Northbridge, MA) fourth in the javelin (108-3).

Calvin 244.5
Hope 183.5
Albion 99
Adrian 86
Alma 65
Trine 58
Olivet 36

Calvin 322
Hope 212.5
Albion 113.5
Adrian 57
Alma 49
Olivet 8

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