The Valparaiso University track and field teams continued their busy weekend of meets on Saturday with all of their competitors in Louisville for Day 2 of the Lenny Lyles/Clark Wood Invitational. The teams were led by junior sprinter Sierra Fischer (Brookfield, Wis./Brookfield (Carroll) - who bolstered her place in the Valpo record books - and sophomore jumper T.J. Weinzimmer (Northbrook, Ill./Glenbrook North).
How It Happened
- Fischer set a new personal best in the 400-meter dash with a time of 58.89. She increased her lead for fifth place in program history for the event that she established last meet in Illinois (58.98). Weinzimmer furthered his best triple jump with a mark of 45-3½ (13.80m). He finished seventh in the seeded finals and was less than a half-foot off from breaking into the record books himself (Steve Schubert owns the fifth-place mark from 2010 at 45-9).
- Two freshman, Eddie Juszczak (Lowell, Ind./Lowell) and Alek Trafton (Lockport, Ill./Lockport), set personal records in the discus throw, finishing 10th and 12th, respectively. Juszczak hit 134-4 (40.94m) while Trafton landed at 128-2 (39.08m).
- Connor Hickey (Peru, Ill./LaSalle-Peru) and Ignacio Veloz Bonilla (San Juan, P.R./American Military Academy) finished neck-and-neck in the men’s 1500, both setting PRs in the event. Hickey edged out his teammate, finishing 10th in a 52-runner field with a time of 3:57.75, while Veloz Bonilla came across at 3:57.93 and in 12th. Joey Black (O’Fallon, Ill./O’Fallon) also competed in the event, earning a season-best time of 4:06.13.
- Hickey also competed in his first javelin throw of the season, finishing 12th out of 30 with a mark of 149-8 (45.62m).
- Taylor Justison (Catham, Ill./Glenwood) led the way in the women’s 1500-meter run, coming across the line at 5:04.42. Maranda Donahue (Delton, Mich./Delton-Kellogg) recorded her career-best time of 5:08.33 in the event, while Olivia Recker (Fishers, Ind./Hamilton Southeastern) set a new season-best time of 5:23.89.
- Will Maidment (Woodstock, Ill./Woodstock) recorded an outdoor season-best mark in the high jump, clearing 6-3¼ (1.91m).
- Jack Worman (Hanover Parks, Ill./Hoffman Estates) set a new PR in the 3000-meter steeplechase, finishing at 9:39.25. Andrew Zittel (Massillon, Ohio/Jackson) nearly set his PR, as his finishing time of 10:35.71 is just over a second off his previous best (10:34.52). Claire Kovarik (Downers Grove, Ill./Downers Grove Norther) shaved more than 16 seconds off her previous steeplechase time, recording a career-best 13:09.36 in the women’s race.
- The women’s 4x100 team set a season-best time when Aaliyah Strickland (Chicago, Ill./Westinghouse College Prep), Fischer, Jordan Houlihan (Hickory Hills, Ill./Amos Alonzo Stagg) and Shannon Lahey (Dixon, Ill./Dixon) finished in 50.75.
Inside the Meet
- Valpo finished the meets at Hillsdale and Louisville having set 21 career bests while recording nine top-10 finishes.
The regular season has concluded for Valpo. The team’s next meet will be the Missouri Valley Conference Outdoor Championships, hosted by Indiana State on May 10-12.