Solid showing at Kansas has Minn. looking to Drake

Both the Gophers men’s and women’s track teams will ride streaks of success into next weekend’s pivotal Drake Relays in Des Moines, Iowa.

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Macalester Twilight
what: Men’s track
when: Time TBA, Wednesday
where: St. Paul

The women had another solid showing Friday and Saturday at the Kansas Relays in Lawrence, Kan.

Friday was highlighted by standout performances from the distance medley relay team of freshmen Nikki Swenson and Jamie Dittmar, senior Challis Larson, junior Gabriele Anderson and by All-American senior javelin thrower Ruby Radocaj.

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drake relays
what: Women’s track
when: Time TBA, Friday-Saturday
where: Des Moines, Iowa

The relay team ran a time of 12 minutes, 4.5 seconds to win first place.

Radocaj threw the javelin 168 feet, 5 inches – enough to earn a second-place finish.

Other notable finishes from Friday were junior high jumper Caitlin Roemhildt and freshman high jumper Natalie Devine, finishing third and fifth respectively in the high jump. Sophomore Megan Duwell placed third in the steeple chase, and senior thrower Liz Podominick finished sixth in the shot put.

Saturday saw seven Gophers women post marks worthy of NCAA Midwest Regional berths.

Senior hurdler Dawn Solberg set the school record in the qualifying round of the 100-meter hurdles with a time of 13.82 seconds.

Gophers’ women also captured first and second in the 1,500-meter run. Junior Heather Dorniden won first place with a time of 4 minutes, 23.21 seconds. Junior Jamie Cheever came in second with a personal-best 4:24.76.

Podominick also finished third in the discus with a career-best throw of 178-2.

Senior Christin Kingsley finished seventh in the long jump with a 20-2 1/4.

Junior Julie Schwengler ran a 2:07.14 in the 800-meter run to score a third place finish.

Alicia Rue also finished sixth in the pole vault with a 12-7 1/2.

Radocaj said she is pleased with the team’s progress at this point in the season.

“A lot of girls are stepping up on the track and in the field,” she said.

Men solid at small meets

While many of the Gophers men took the weekend off to prepare for the Drake Relays, sophomore Aaron Studt posted a personal best and won three titles at two meets in two days.

“It was a huge breakthrough for him,” said coach Phil Lundin. “He’s evolved and is stabilizing at a high level.”

At the Tommie Twilight Meet in St. Paul on Friday, Studt set a personal record in the shot put, with a meet-winning throw of 62-7 1/2. This was the third-best throw in school history.

Saturday, at the Carleton Relays in Northfield, Studt threw 60-10 1/2 in the shot put and 176-3 in the hammer. He won both events.

The Tommie Twilight Meet also saw junior Seijen Takamura win the 5,000-meter run and freshman David Gierut win the pole vault.

Junior Sayfe Jassim won the 200-meter dash at the Carleton relays and finished second in the 100-meter dash. Sophomore Mike Torchia finished third in the 1500, while senior Forrest Tahdooahnippah finished fourth.

The Gophers decathletes also traveled to the Kansas Relays to compete.

Sophomore R.J. McGinnis finished fourth with 6,879 points, followed by sophomore David Meissner (sixth) and freshmen Garrett Wankel (seventh) and Joey Schwecke (ninth).