(Editor's note: MSUB Athletics release)
BILLINGS – The indoor track and field season will open this weekend as the Yellowjackets travel to Bozeman on Friday to compete in the Bobcat Preview. The meet begins at 11:00 a.m. with the men and women competing in 13 events throughout the day. After Saturday’s meet the team will compete in five additional indoor meets and nine outdoor meets lasting from January 11 to May 25.
This year the women’s roster features 11 returners and four newcomers while the men’s team will have 13 returners and 10 newcomers. In the 2018-19 indoor track season, the Yellowjacket men placed eighth in the Great Northwest Athletic Conference while the women came in 10th. The men finished in eighth place in the GNAC outdoor championships while the women again placed 10th.
“We are excited for our opening meet especially our Fall Track & Field Crew that have been practicing but haven’t competed since this past spring,” said head coach Jonathan Woehl. “The first meet is a great chance to practice our competitive meet mentality, I’m not necessarily expecting PRs right out of the gate but do expect to see everyone go compete hard in all of their events. Fall workouts have gone well and our seniors are looking to get a strong start. We have several new faces in our Men’s sprint and Women’s throws squads and it will be fun to see them get to suit up for their first meet as Yellowjackets.”
“For the men this season, I’m looking forward to seeing Isaiah Girard, Marcus Lindquist and Mason Schram open on Friday. All three have had a good fall of training and are healthy.
MENS OUTLOOK: Beau Ackerman returns to the field (but only for the outdoor season) after redshirting the 2018-19 season. When we last saw him compete in 2017-18, he finished the season as a first team all-American in the javelin with a fifth-place finish at the NCAA D2 National Outdoor Championships in Charlotte, N.C.
Ackerman set MSUB record in the javelin with a throw of 69.13 meters (226' 10") at the Drake Relays in Des Moines, Iowa and won the GNAC championship in the javelin with a throw of 67.99m (223' 1") in Monmouth, Ore. becoming MSUB's first male field-event champion.
Mason Schram Competed in the 60 and 200 meter dash in the indoor season. He took fifth place in the 60 meter finals at the GNAC Indoor Championships and 10th place in 200 meter dash prelims at GNAC Indoor Championships.
During the outdoor season, Schram ran one leg of 4x100 meter relay team, which took GNAC title in Monmouth with a time of 41.28 seconds. He held a season best 100 meter time of 10.72 seconds at the Montana State Open (3rd place), a season best 200 meter time of 22.17 seconds at the Jack Christiansen Invitational (8th place).
He was named to the USTFCCCA All-Region team for the 4x100 meter relay and was back to back GNAC 4x100 meter relay champion.
Isiah Girard placed third at the GNAC Championships in the high jump with a MSUB-record height of 2.02 meters (6' 7.5"). He placed seventh at the conference meet in the long jump at a distance of 6.57 meters (21' 6.75") and ran the 4x400-relay at five meets and the 4x100-relay at the Yellowjacket Open.
Marcus Lindquist Competed in primarily long jump and triple jump with appearances in 200 meter dash and 400 meter hurdles. He took seventh place in the long jump at Montana Open April 12-13 at 20', 7.25". He also placed ninth at GNAC Outdoor Championships with 43' 8.5" triple jump.
Rahkei Eyer ran the fourth leg of men's 4x100 meter relay team which won GNAC outdoor title on May 10 with a time of 41.28 seconds. He finished in fourth place in GNAC outdoor championships in men's 200 meters (22.25 seconds) and set a season best times in the 100 and 200 meter dash at the Montana State Open.
Eyer also finished 3rd in the 200 meters with a time of 21.88 seconds.
Kyle Patelis will look to improve upon a great freshman campaign. He took third place 60 meter hurdle time of 8.87 seconds at CSC Open Jan. 20 and Ran 7.10 seconds for a personal best and sixth place finish in the 60 meter dash at the GNAC Indoor Championships.
During the outdoor season, he held a Long Jump season best 18' 9.25" at Yellow Jacket Spring Open for 12th place. He has a season best 100 and 200 meter times posted at Montana State Open Apr. 20, fifth place finish in 100 with time of 10.92 seconds. Overall he competed in seven outdoor meets (100, 200, 4x100, Long Jump).
For throws, senior Forrest Cross will likely be a big contributor and leader. Last season, he competed in the shot put and discus at the GNAC championships. After competing in four events during the season, Cross’s personal-best in the shot put was 14.17 meters (46' 6") at the Dickinson State Blue Hawk Games where he also threw a collegiate-bests in the discus 44.28m (145' 3") and hammer throw 35.87m (117' 8"). He then threw the javelin at the Montana Open while recording a personal-best of 45.40m (148' 11").
Kyle McLaughlin will try his hand in throwing this season. Last year, he finished 15th at GNAC Indoor Championships in 800 meters with time of 2:00.77. He held a season best 400 meter time of 54.47 for 23rd place at Air Force Invitational and a 200 meter 21st place finish at Bobcat Preview.
Newcomers Ely Kraft from Laurel, MT and Connor McNiel will see their first action this weekend.
For the distance runners, Ase Ackerman and Ronald Venema will lead the charge.
Last season, Ackerman Competed in six events and finished 14th in the GNAC Outdoor Championships with a season best 10:07.04 time in the 3000 meter steeplechase.
He ran16:55.03 in the 5000 meters at the Montana State Open and finished second. Ackerman took 15th place at GNAC Indoor Championships in 3000 meters (9:05.61).
Venema Ran 5000, 10000, 1500, and 3000 meter events in eight meets. He took 19th in the GNAC Outdoor Championships with a 10,000 meter time of 35:28.28. His season best 10,000 meter time came at the Montana State Open, 35:19.14 (3rd place) and he took sixth place 5K at Yellowjackets/Battlin Bears Open March 30.
WOMEN’S OUTLOOK: “For Women’s team, I will be looking forward to seeing Taylor Stringari, Brenna Beckett and Nikki Aiken,” commented Woehl. “All three have worked very hard throughout the fall and provided great leadership for our women’s team.
Taylor Stringari will be looking to end her senior year on a high note. Last year, she competed in seven outdoor meets and 11th place at GNAC Outdoor Championships in hammer throw (123' 3") and 12th place in shot put (32. 8.25"). She took third in hammer throw at the University of Providence Open (129'0").
During the indoor season, Stringari set personal bests in shot put and weight throw at the GNAC Indoor Championships with a 6th place finish after a throw of 38' 4". She also took 14th place at conference meet in weight throw (42' 4.75").
Newcomers Cristina Chapi, Hannah Heath, Brynn Jolma and Mariah May will all see their first cation as they will look for positive results in the throws events.
Brenna Beckett competed in long jump, triple jump, 400 meters, 4x400 meter relay last year. She placed third in long jump at CSC Open Jan. 20 after marking 16' 2.5".
In the outdoor season, Beckett took first place in long jump at Yellow Jacket Spring Open March 22-23 with jump of 15' 11" and second place in 4x400 meters at same meet. She took homes first place in 400 meter dash at Montana Open (1:00.16).
Her Season best 400 meters came at the Montana State Open, as she finished 2nd with a time of 1:00.07. At the Dickinson State Last Chance meet, she set season highs in long jump and triple jump and finished 3rd in both.
She took eighth at GNAC outdoor championship in 4x400 meter relay, 20th in long jump (16' 1.75"), and 14th in triple jump (34' 2.25").
Nikki Aiken will spearhead the distance events for MSUB. Last year, she placed 14th in the 3000 meters at the GNAC Indoor Championships with a time of 10:53.45. She also took 11th in the 5000 meters with a time of 19:22.24. She competed in the 5000, 3000, mile, 800, and DMR events and her best mile time was 5:35.53 at Bobcat Preview on her way to a first place finish.
For the outdoor season, Aiken began with competition in 3000 meter steeplechase and 4x400 meter relay. She held a personal best 800 meters at Montana State Open 2:30.71 for 11th place, a personal best 1500 meters 4:56.37 at University of Providence Open for 2nd place, a personal best 5000 meters at GNAC Outdoor Championships, 18:15.89 for 12th place and a top ten conference finish in 3000 meter steeplechase, seventh place 11:22.87 at GNAC championships.
Madison Thompson returns for the Yellowjackets. Last year, she competed in eight outdoor meets, events that included 100 and 200 meter dash, long jump, and 4x100 meter relay. Her personal best long jump mark was 16' 9.25" at Jack Christiansen Invitational and was good enough for sixth place. She took home second place 4x100 meter relay (50.03 seconds) at the Montana State Open.
Kaitlin Mason will be kicking off her sophomore year Friday. In 2018-19, she ran in four meets including Bobcat Preview, MSU Open, CSC Open, and Air Force Invitational. She took fourth place in 4x400 meter relay Jan 11 with time of 4:46.58 then held a college best 60 meter dash 8.43 seconds at Bobcat Preview.
When outdoor season came along, Mason ran 100, 200, and 4x100 meter relay in the spring. She recorded a personal best 200 meters at Montana State Open for ninth place (26.71 seconds) on her way to taking 20th in 100 meter prelims at GNAC Outdoor Championships.
BOBCAT OPEN: DECEMBER 6.
4:00 pm – Men’s Weight Throw, Women’s Weight Throw, Men’s Sot put, Women’s Shot put.
4:00 pm – Women’s Long Jump, Men’s Long Jump, Women’s Triple jump, Men’s triple jump.
4:30 pm – Men’s Pole Vault, Women’s Pole Vault.
5:00 pm- Women’s High jump, Men’s High Jump.
4:50 pm – National Anthem
5:00 pm – Women’s Mile
5:08 pm – Men’s Mile
5:25 pm – Women’s 60 Hurdles (2 heats)
5:35 pm – Men’s 60 hurdles (2 heats)
5:45 pm – Women’s 400 (2 heats)
6:05 pm – Men’s 400 (2 heats)
6:15 pm – Lil’ Bobcat 200 with Champ
6:25 pm – Women’s 60 (2 heats)
6:35 pm – Men’s 60 (3 heats)
6:50 pm – Women’s 800 (2 heats)
6:55 pm – Men’s 800 (2 heats)
7:00 pm – Women’s 200 (5 heats)
7:20 pm – Men’s 200 (6 heats)
7:45 pm – Women’s 5,000
8:10 pm – Men’s 5,000
8:30 pm – Women’s 1,600 Relay
8:45 pm – Men’s 1,600 Relay (2 heats)