Nationals showcase ’Cats’ storied, dominant athletes
– Dominic Baez, managing editor
Three track and field athletes will put a year’s worth of practice in action as they participate in the NCAA Division III Track and Field Championships at the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh today.
Sophomores Josh and Jeremy Lovell are competing in the decathlon at nationals, held at J.J. Keller Field
at Titan Stadium.
Josh totalled 3,598 points on the first day of competition, placing second in the high jump and fourth in the 100-meter dash and the long jump. He is in second
Josh ranks second in the the decathlon with 6,798 points, and Jeremy Lovell, who earned All-America honors at last year’s decathlon, ranks seventh in the division this season with 6,630 points.
Jeremy kept pace with his brother, finishing sixth overall after placing fifth in the 100-meter dash and third in the long jump.
The two-day, 10-event competition for the Lovell brothers started yesterday at noon and continues through Saturday afternoon.
Senior Casey Stepan competed in a qualifying heat of the 1,500-meter run, but her efforts were not enough to earn her a bid to the next day of competition.
Stepan took a brief lead, then broke free of the pack on the second lap, but was passed by runners on the closing lap. Her seventh-place finish was three spots short of what was needed to advance.
For Stepan it was a race that marked the end of her illustrious career as a
Wildcat. She finishes her time at the school with nine varsity letters and ranks third on the all-time list for the 1,500.
Several Linfield athletes fell short of reaching provisional marks for nationals.
Freshman Brooke Carstensen broke the school record twice in the pole vault, first at the Oregon Twilight meet and again at the John Knight meet the next night, and met the NCAA provisional mark. Though she was able to meet the qualifying height in her event, she was unable to outjump the rest of the competition, setting her just behind the cutoff point.
“I was half an inch off,” Carstensen said. “I’m kind of disappointed. I’m never completely happy with myself until I completely annihilate everybody. Overall, I am happy with
Along with setting a new Linfield record, Carstensen was also awarded most outstanding female track athlete by the team, and she has already started training for next year’s nationals.
Senior Harrison Wilson also came close to making the provisional ark, just two seconds shy.
However, he did run the 5000 with a time of 14:50.18, number eight all-time, at the Oregon Twilight meet.
“It was a fast year,” Wilson said. “There are no more meets left for me; it’s kind of crazy. (It’s) a good thing because you don’t want to be in college forever, but (it’s) bad because I will miss my teammates.”
For Josh and Jeremy Lovell, the second day of the decathalon today brings the last five events.
They will compete in the 110-meter hurdles, discus, pole vault, javelin and 1,500-meter run.