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MSU Billings hosts Rocky Mountain College Saturday in only home track meet

Posted at 3:38 PM, Mar 29, 2019


(MSUB Athletics photo)

(MSUB Athletics release)

BILLINGS – The men’s and women’s track and field teams at Montana State University Billings are preparing to host the Yellowjacket/Battlin’ Bears Open on Saturday, March 30. Men’s and women’s hammer throw begins at 9 a.m. on MSUB campus. Other field events start at noon at Laurel High School and track events are scheduled for 1 p.m.

I think everyone is excited to have a home meet,” said head coach Jon Woehl. “We’ve never had hammer throw at MSUB so I’m looking forward to that as well. Saturday is looking favorable weather wise so I think it will be a good meet for our athletes.”

The Yellowjackets will be competing against a large field of Division II teams, potentially the largest ever for a home track meet. Teams that were in Spearfish last weekend that are expected to come to Billings include South Dakota Mines, Rocky Mountain College, Minot State, and Dickinson State. Jamestown University, University of Mary, Carroll College, University of Providence, Dawson County Community College, and Central Wyoming College will likely also bring athletes to the meet.

There will be preliminary races in the 100 meter dash and possibly other races, dependent upon the number of entries. The top 10 runners will advance to the finals in the event.

MSU Billings had a strong start to the outdoor track and field season last weekend when they competed in the Yellowjacket Open, hosted by Black Hills State University in Spearfish, South Dakota. They will be looking to continue the positive momentum this weekend competing with close to a full roster of players.

Kaelen Shay ran a career best 11.06 seconds in the 100 meter dash to finish second in Spearfish. Teammates Mason Schram and Kyle Patelis placed third and fourth respectively to give MSUB three of the top five finishers in the event.

“Our sprinters had solid opening marks last week,” commented Woehl. “It was good to see Kaelen and Mason do well in the 100 meters and 200 meters. Kyle Patelis won his heat in the 100 meters going away so I would expect he is going to start going in faster draws and better competition as we move forward.”

Isaiah Girard continued to impress and won the men’s high jump with a mark of 2.06 meters. Girard surpassed his own school record of 2.02 meters set during indoor season and set an NCAA Division II provisional mark. Girard is expected to compete in high jump and long jump this weekend having competed well in both events last Saturday.

“We were pleasantly surprised at how well Isaiah did last week,” Woehl said. “Indoor didn’t end quite the way we wanted because we didn’t qualify for Nationals but with some time off and a chance to get back into a regular routine, he had a good result in fair conditions in Spearfish. Hopefully he can continue to build.”

Women’s 4×400 relay will be another intriguing event on Saturday at Laurel High School. Sierra Durbin, Josey Smiedala, Kailee Stoppel, and Brenna Beckett combined for a time of 4:13.06 and a second place finish in Spearfish. It was the first time the four of them competed in the event this season after Smiedala was forced to miss most of indoor track season due to injury. Now healthy, Smiedala ran the second leg of the race while Beckett ran the fourth leg.

“I am really excited for our 4×400 team this spring. The goal is to keep those four together as much as we can and keep knocking time off week by week to see where we can end up this year. They have some good team chemistry at Black Hills State. I was fun to see them rise to the occasion and perform well. Josie came through with a good meet now that she is healthy so we’re really excited to see what they can achieve together as well as individually.”

Brady Ostermiller came in first place in men’s shot put at the Yellow Jacket Open after he took a mark of 14.70 meters. Ostermiller will look to overtake his previous personal best of 16.14 meters. Other Yellowjackets expected to throw the shot include Matthew Poore and Forrest Cross. In women’s shot put, MSUB brings Hannah Nessan, Hailey Steinbeisser, Taylor Stringari, and Abbie Lohof.

“Hannah and Brady had pretty good opening weeks for us. It had been since last year since we’ve thrown disc outdoors and I felt we did really well in that event. Matthew Poore was a highlight in disc throw last week since he hadn’t participated in that event since a couple years ago in high school.”

Brenna Beckett won women’s long jump with a mark of 4.85 meters last weekend. She set a personal best at 5.24 meters at the Dickinson State Blue Hawk Games in 2018.

I think everyone is excited to have a home meet,” said head coach Jon Woehl. “We’ve never had hammer throw at MSUB so I’m looking forward to that as well. Saturday is looking favorable weather wise so I think it will be a good meet for our athletes.”

SENIOR DAY: In between hurdle events at Laurel High School, the Yellowjackets will be taking time to honor the seniors competing in their final home meet for MSUB. Seniors include Ivan Colmenero, Beau Peaslee, Janessa Williams, Josey Smiedala, Jamie Orme, Sam Zook, Abbie Lohof, Hailey Steinbeisser, Hannah Nessan, Brady Ostermiller, Kaelen Shay, Mark Hovland, and Shaniah Schwend.