2016 Track and Field
Reese highlights Beavers at Dragon Open
January 23, 2016
TIFFIN, Ohio - After enduring the bitter conditions of the past several weeks, the Beavers ventured forth into the den of another mainly Division II field at the Tiffin University Track & Field “Dragon Open”.
Sophomore D’Nae Reese (Columbus/Upper Arlington) highlighted the Bluffton team performances with a PR shot put of 36’ 10.25”, placing 15th as the only Division III athlete in the field of 28. Junior DiVaUnta Spearman (Sandusky/Willard) also had a lifetime PR in the shot, better even than his previous best outdoor performance and throwing a season best in the weight. Freshman Sarah Oliver (Lexington) improved her height in the pole vault, continuing her adjustment to collegiate level vaulting.
On the track, sophomore Sarah Hunter (Mt. Blanchard/Riverdale) ran within .40 of her season best time, out of the 3rd heat, for a 6th place finish in a field of 17 that included only one other Division III competitor. As anchor of the 4 x 400 relay, Hunter helped the women to a season-best time along with fellow runners Terrill Webb (Kenton), Hannah Krull (Lewisburg/Tri-County North) and Anna Hairston (Mansfield/Ontario). Freshman Austin Brown (Newton Falls) also ran a best time in the 200 meters while Kyle Knezovich (Utica) placed 4th in a field of 12 vaulters, first in Division III, once again clearing the 14’ bar.
“The wind chills of the past few weeks have forced many event groups indoors to train on treadmills and ellipticals as well as harder floor surfaces. Quite frankly I feel that has contributed to the ‘banged up’ state of the team,” said Head Coach Karen Brandt. “We rested a number of athletes and under-raced others to give them a chance to recover for future meets. It’s tough this time of year when we have to train with an eye to the indoor championship and the all-too-short outdoor campaign while balancing the need to perform on a weekly basis. It can lead to some up and down meet performances from week-to-week. However, I am confident that in the long run, we will continue to show improvement. The athletes are resilient and determined.”
The Beavers return to the University of Findlay for the Indoor Track & Field Classic Friday, Jan. 29 and Saturday, Jan. 30. Friday night’s portion of the meet will include the weight throw (women starting at 4:30 p.m.) and women’s pole vault in the field events with the 5000 meter races starting at 6:45 p.m. The remainder of the events will be contested Saturday with field events starting at 10:30 a.m. and track action commencing at 12:15 p.m.