The William Jewell Track and Field team took to competition April 10 and 11 at the Darrel Gourley Open hosted at Greene Stadium on Jewell’s campus. The women finished in second place overall among 18 teams. The men’s team finished eighth out of 18 teams.
On the men’s side, there were numerous top 10 finishes. Quentin Riser, senior, placed ninth in the 200 meter race, which tied the school record. In the 1500 Meters, Uriah Heady, junior, and Dustin Ownbey, sophomore, finished seventh and 10th, respectively. In the shot put competition, Trevor Nicks, sophomore, finished seventh and Alec Whiteside, sophomore, was 8th. In the discus event, Tanner Butterfield, first-year, placed 7th. Lastly, in the hammer throw, Whiteside placed 6th, Nicks finished 9th, and Butterfield rounded out at 10th.
The Cardinals also had five top five finishes. In the 10,000 Meters, Chaston Kome, senior, placed fourth. In the pole vault event, Isaac Mattis, sophomore, finished fifth. Tanner Butterfield also left his mark on the javelin throw competition, finishing fifth. Blake Alexander, sophomore, finished fourth in the 400 hurdles and second in the 110 hurdles. His second place finish placed him at 19th in NCAA Division II rankings and first in the Great Lakes Valley Conference (GLVC).
Thrower Alec Whiteside reflected on the competition.
“As a team we were pretty happy about our performances as a whole. I know that there were marks out there that were not satisfying for individual expectations but the drive for success as a team is there,” Whiteside said.
On the women’s side of the meet, there were seven top 10 finishers. In the 200 meters, Gretchen Mayes, sophomore, placed eighth. Evan Jones, senior, finished tenth in the 400 hurdles and Shelbie White, sophomore, placed sixth in pole vaulting. Emmalee Hyde, first-year, placed sixth in shot put, ninth in discus and 10th in hammer throw. Ashlee Halstead, first-year, finished ninth in the shot put event.
The Cards also boasted 12 top five finishers. Gretchen Mayes finished fifth in the 100 meters (beating the school record), Jessica Goldsberry, junior, finished at second in the 400 hurdles (which beat the school record) and Elizabeth Stevenson, first-year, placed second in the 500 meters. Julia Parker, sophomore, finished fourth in the high jump,which tied the school record and finished in second place in the heptathlon. Lainey Foltz and Liria Gutierrez, juniors, placed second and third, respectively in the 3000 meter steeplechase. Mayes also finished second in the long jump, behind Margaret Perko, junior. Perko placed second in the 100 hurdles and first in the heptathlon. Perko, Goldsberry, Mayes and Elaine Barella, first-year, placed third in the 4 x 400 relay. Barella, Goldsberry, Stevenson and Dylan Zinszer, first-year, took the top spot in the 4 x 800 relay for the Cardinals.
When asked about the biggest learning moment of the meet Mayes said, “it takes a team working together to gain ground and accomplish a common goal. Each of our individual points contributed to our goal to score for our meet.”
The women’s team lost to a nationally ranked top five team, Lincoln University.
“Our athletes continue to learn that they can do amazing things even when they don’t feel their best or are entered in multiple events. To press on and to persevere in those moments where you may feel weak. As a coach, these are skills that I believe translate directly to life,” Coach Tom Eisenhauer said.
With the GLVC Championship meet coming up May 1-2, the team looks to place high at the home meet.
“With the advantage of transportation, sleep and nutrition on our side I truly think the William Jewell Track and Field team can turn some heads this year at the GLVC Championships,” Whiteside said.