On Saturday, the Red Raider track and field team traveled to Storm Lake to participate in the Buena Vista Open. The team tallied up three individual first-place finishes as well as a total of 30 top-five finishes. Ten season bests and 26 personal records were also captured on this successful day for the Raiders.
Decorated redshirt junior Matt Huseman captured first place in the high jump for the second week in a row, clearing a season-high 6-10.75, and bettering his NAIA automatic qualifying mark. But for Huseman, the drive to get better does not stop at any certain mark.
“I have every confidence in the training that my coaches and I have put together that I’ll surpass that magic 7′ height this season,” Huseman said. “I think one thing that I’ve learned is that in order to hit high heights in meets, you have to practice at those heights weekly so we’ve been doing that a lot in the past couple of weeks.”
Senior Brandon Schuler finished with a first place medal in the 600 meter run with a time of 1:25, beating the next-closest competitor by a half second.
“You want to get out fast, stay as relaxed as possible and finish strong,” Schuler said. “The times will take care of themselves if I put the work in during the week and compete on race day.”
In the 1000 meter run, sophomore Skyler Giddings crossed the finish line in first place with a time of 2:36, beating a former personal-best time of 2:43.
The men’s 4×800 meter relay, consisting of junior Zach Wittenberg, redshirt sophomore Taylor Bodin, sophomore Logan Hovland and Gidding, finished in second place with a time of 7:56. The qualifying mark is currently the fourth fastest time in the NAIA this season.
Sophomore Megan Walhof beat a personal record with a time of 1:00.69 and a second place finish in the 400-meter dash. Sophomore Allyson Austin finished second place in the triple jump with a mark of 34-07.75.
“I actually didn’t find out what my official time was until probably half an hour or so after I had run,” Walhof said. “So when I finally checked, I was pretty pumped to find out that I had run my fastest time ever in the open 400.”
Junior Kyle Heidebrink notched a second place finish in the 55-meter hurdles with a time of 7.89 seconds, which gave him a new personal best. Senior Brandon Hammack finished second in the 200-meter dash at 23.1 seconds. Freshman Kevin Martinson finished in second in the 400-meter dash with a time of 52.08.
The Raiders return to action at 9 a.m. on Saturday in Storm Lake to compete in the Dennis Young Invitational.