Dayna Wichhart—Staff Writer
On Saturday, Jan. 14, Dordt University hosted an indoor track meet. This was the first meet for these athletes coming out of the three-weeklong break from classes. This team has a quick turnaround from being on break to being fully in season for track.
The Women’s Track and Field team won five individual running events, three field events, and two relays. 16 women from Dordt claimed a first place finish in their respective events.
Anmarie Stuit clocked in a 59.54 in the 400m sprint. Stuit’s time is the third fasted time in the GPAC and is the 10th fasted in the program’s history. Emilee Heynen follows Stuit with a 59.6, the fourth fasted in the GPAC.
The Defenders found themselves successful in the field events, winning the high jump, long jump, and triple jump.
Sophomore Saydie Clark participated in the pole vault event and cleared 10-foot-3-inches, a personal record for Clark. Clark had worked towards this height for the past few years and finally cleared it in this meet.
“My senior year of high school, I attempted 10 feet five times and last year I attempted it a few times as well,” Clark said.
Before attempting the 10-foot-3-inch vault, Clark rewatched the video of her 9-foot-9-inch vault and focused on what she needed to fix.
“In my head, I didn’t think that I was going to make it on the first attempt,” Clark said. “As soon as I could see that I was over the bar, I was immediately shocked and super excited. I couldn’t believe it.”
After Clark landed on the soft pad, she popped up and ran over to hug some of her family.
Clark was relieved to have finally cleared 10 feet.
“It was such a great moment that I will never forget, and I give all glory to God for it,” Clark said.
The Men’s Track and Field team had a similarly successful meet. The Defenders came out with eight events wins. Senior Grant Brouwer had an outstanding performance, winning both the high jump and triple jump. Brouwer is ranked No. 10 in the NAIA and No. 5 in the GPAC.
“The first meet back went terrific,” Brouwer said. “I was able to qualify for the national meet in the high jump and I set a personal record in the triple jump.”
Brouwer surpassed his previous triple jump record by 2.5 feet and looks forward to improving as the season progresses. He is looking to develop his consistency from meet to meet and is hoping to feel confident in his preparation for the national meets.
The Dordt track team trekked to Brookings, S.D. to compete at the South Dakota State University meet. This meet had steep competition as athletes competed alongside of NCAA Division One and Division Two schools.
The men’s team qualified for nationals in seven events and set two school records. Payton Mauldin and Joe Anderson set records in the 800m and 3000m events. The team recorded 12 Top 10 finishes and eight Defenders had times that put them in the GPAC’s Top 10.
The women had three of their own qualifying for nationals in three events. Jessica Kampman broke her own school record being named No. 1 time in the GPAC. Seven additional events finished among the Top 10.
“A dream come true would be to win the national title this year as a team at the national meet,” Brouwer said.
As the Defenders look towards the rest of the season, the next item on the docket is a meet at Mount Marty University on Jan. 28.