Pella–All of that preseason training paid off big dividends for the William Penn track and field teams as they opened the indoor campaign at the Central Dutch Holiday PreviewSaturday.
The men were first out of 12 squads with 92 points, holding off Graceland by one point. The women placed seventh out of 13 teams with 17 points, while Truman (Mo.) and Central Methodist (Mo.) shared the title with 98 points.
On the opening day of the season, three competitors locked up berths to nationals in four separate events.
Derek Seddon (Jr., Knoxville, Iowa, Physical Education) was the navy and gold’s trailblazer, finishing first in both the weight throw and shot put. Seddon’s weight toss of 55-8 broke his old school record of 54-10.25 and eclipsed the NAIA’s automatic standard, while his shot put mark of 49-9.75 met the provisional-qualifying standard.
Cornelius McCastle (Jr., McKinney, Texas, Industrial Technology) also hit the ‘A’ standard in the high jump as his mark of 6-8.25 placed him first in the event. Meaghan Foster (Sr., Centerville, Iowa, Physical Education) will join her male teammates in March in Johnson City, Tenn. as her runner-up throw of 42-5.5 in the shot put met the ‘B’ standard.
Foster was also fourth in the weight throw at 46-6.
Chris Gossett (Sr., Park Forest, Ill., Mechanical Engineering) was an event champion as well, winning the triple jump at 43-4.25.
Led by CJ Watts (Sr., Rockville, Md., Physical Education) and his second-place time of 1:24.87, four Statesmen were in the top 10 in the men’s 600-meter run. Neiman Thompson (Sr., Rockville, Md., Physical Education) was fourth (1:25.48), Stepfon Williams (Jr., St. Louis, Mo., Industrial Technology) was fifth (1:25.67), and Charles Hurtwas sixth (1:25.86).
Three men were also high finishers in the 1,000-meter run with Payton Busch (Jr., Centerville, Iowa, Secondary Education) crossing the line in third (2:37.90), Zach Johnson(So., Decatur, Ill., Mechanical Engineering) in seventh (2:45.90), and Garrett Heckman (So., New Virginia, Iowa, Mechanical Engineering) in 10th (2:52.91).
Kalob Gist (Sr., Oskaloosa, Iowa, Business Management) was runner-up to Seddon in the shot put at 45-7.75, while the 4×400-meter relay team claimed bronze with a time of 3:29.19.
Earl George collected a pair of strong showings, taking sixth in the long jump at 20-1 and 10th in the high jump at 5-8.75.
Markenson Charles (Jr., Lehigh Acres, Fla., Industrial Technology) headlined a list of other top-10 finishers as he was fifth in the 60-meter hurdles in 8.70 seconds. Aaron Seddon (Jr., Knoxville, Iowa, Physical Education) took home sixth-place honors in the weight throw (43-7) and Ochaung Akway (Sr., St. Paul, Minn., Physical Education) was ninth in the 3,000-meter run (9:23.23).
Foster was not alone as a productive Statesmen female as Kristin Lastovka (Sr., Brooklyn, Iowa, Business Management) placed fifth in the shot put at 37-10 and Taylor Richardson (Fr., Oskaloosa, Iowa) finished ninth in the 300-meter run in 45.29 seconds.
Next Up: William Penn is off until after semester break, returning to action the weekend of January 15-16. Some individuals will compete at the Wartburg Relays in Waverly on the 15th and some will compete at the Dubuque Sol Butler Classic in Dubuque on the 16th.
Story provided by Wade Steinlage