Men: Elliott Portillo
Women: John Cusick
BU Terrier Classic
The BU John Thomas Terrier Classic saw most of the D2 action that went down this weekend. Overall, seven new provisional marks were set.
In the 800, four men made it on the NCAA performance list. Hugo Arlabosse of Franklin Pierce finished 5th behind multiple post-collegians with a time of 1:50.77. This is currently #3 in all of Division II and only the third time under 1:51 this season. Behind him, Ayman Zahafi of TAMU-Kingsville, Stephen Vercollone of Stonehill, and Nick Fenton of American International ran 1:51.46, 1:52.95, and 1:53.12, respectively.
This event saw two competitors run their current season bests, as Benoit Campion of American International and Lucas Taxter of Stonehill ran 4:07.32 and 4:09.49 to settle at #2 and #5 on the national leaderboard. Expect an exciting duel between the two at the NE-10 Conference Championships in February.
Christopher Lebeau of So. Conn. St. hung tough in a field comprised of top Division I and post-collegiate talent. The sophomore ran 8:22.15 to win his section of the 3k.
Riding off some stellar individual performances, American International also showed their team depth. The Yellow Jackets finished 2nd behind Boston College in a provisional time of 9:53.38. Campion and Fenton both were legs in the relay, and it will be interesting to see if they decide to focus on individual events or help the team when it comes down to Nationals in March.
Pittsburg State Invitational
Matt Christoffer of Southwest Baptist finished 3rd, Brandon Rivera of West Texas A&M finished 4th, and Murad Baheyadeen of Emporia State finished 7th as all three ran good enough to make it onto the NCAA qualifying list. Christoffer’s time of 1:51.81 currently ranks #7 in the country. Rivera and Baheyadeen ran 1:52.21 and 1:53.22 to make it within the top 22 in the nation thus far.
So far, nobody has thrown down what would be considered a “burner” over the mile distance. In fact, nobody has even hit the Division II auto mark of 4:02.24. Despite this, a new national lead was set this weekend, as Brett Meyer of Fort Hayes State ran 4:06.08 to finish runner-up behind Wichita State’s Zack Penrod. Academy of Art’s Victor Moreau moved to #3 on the qualifying list with his 4th place time of 4:07.36. While these times are impressive for January, it will be interesting to see how much faster the mile lead can get, especially as more Colorado based athletes turn their attention towards it.
While Division I stars through down fast times this weekend at the Dempsey, there were still plenty of quality D2 performances of note as well.
The 3k saw Simon Fraser’s Pierre-Louis Detourbe join his teammate Rowan Doherty on the qualifying list for NCAA’s. The sophomore ran 8:16.19 to clinch a top 10 time so far this season.
Not to be outdone by their northern rivals, the Alaska Anchorage duo of Wesley Kirui and Edwin Kangogo both made earned their way onto a pretty cramped 5k qualifiers list. Kirui finished 8th overall to hit a time of 14:18.62, which is good enough to be the #15 time in D2 this year. Kangogo finished 10th in the second section with a time of 14:39.15. As of right now, it looks like the 5k is the go-to event this season, and it will be interesting to see who the first person out is in what appears to be one of the more stacked fields in Division II.
Two GNAC foes both hit provisional standards in the DMR this weekend. Simon Fraser finished 4th behind some D1 heavy hitters with a time of 9:58.86. The Wolves of Western Oregon weren’t far behind, as their team finished 6th in 10:01.78.
At his home meet, Grand Valley senior David Jones took the victory in the 800 with a 1:52.35, beating out freshman teammate Jonathon Groendyk by one second. Jones is one of four Lakers on the national leaderboard in the 800 this year.
Hillsdale junior Joseph Humes beat out the rest of the field by nearly 15 seconds to take home the victory. His time of 8:18.68 currently closes out the top 10 fastest times this season.
2019 Spire Midwest Open
Jack Mastandrea of Charleston (W.V.) ran over 25 seconds faster than his next closest competitor to finish with a time of 14:34.31, good enough to be the #30 time in D2 so far.
The distance medley squads of Walsh and Malone battled to nearly identical times this weekend, with the Cavaliers edging out the Patriots by only one hundredth of a second, 10:02.31 to 10:02.32.
Mines Division II Invite and Multi
Sam Berg of MSU Denver (8:19.61) and Dylan Ko (8:20.99) of Colorado Mines both ran altitude and track converted times to land on the national leaderboard at 11th and 14th, respectively.
This weekend saw the DMR floodgates open as teams finally decided to give the event an honest effort. Of the 13 qualifying marks so far, 11 were set this weekend. Of those 11, five were set at the Mines Division II Invite.
Traditional RMAC powers like Colorado Mines (9:46.17), CSU-Pueblo (9:53.32), and Western Colorado (9:59.48) all ran sub-10. Sioux Falls was the only non-RMAC squad to get a provisional mark with their time of 9:53.82.
To further show the depth of the Orediggers, the Colorado Mines "B" squad also ran a provisional time. Their time adjusted for altitude and track size comes down to 10:04.74, good enough for the 13th fastest time this season.
Max Michaud of Assumption ran 1:52.96 after a track-size conversion landed him at #19 on the 800 meter qualifying list.
Washburn’s Jacob Klemz ran 8:11.79 after track-size conversion to win the 3k at the Jayhawk Classic. His converted time is currently #4 indoors.
Lindenwood’s relay squad bested the field by nearly 30 seconds to run a 9:59.95 (track-size conversion) in the distance medley. They are currently ranked #9 in the nation.
We mentioned that this was the weekend that things were going to start heating up and boy did they not disappoint! There were a lot of provisional times, and one collegiate record to get things going. The performance lists are continuing to grow as athletes pick and choose where they race and what events they think they will be the best at. We’ve already got some clear favorites in some events while we’re beginning to see other fields become more crowded.
2019 KMS Invitational
We have one time to talk about here and it’s from Embry-Riddle’s senior Kristen Metcalfe. She
posted the second automatic qualifying time in the 800 with a time of 2:06.91. That’s a stellar
time to begin with, let alone that she was 11 seconds ahead of the 2nd place finisher in the
2019 UW Invitational
Addy Townsend kicked off the UW Invite with a strong performance of 2:08.70. That's good enough for a #3 ranking on the national performance list. She opened up just as fast as she ran at the National Championships last year, signaling very exciting progression for the Simon Fraser ace.
Danielle McCormick of Alaska Anchorage is now #6 on the performance list after she ran
2:10.90 at UW. Sophie Dodd of Simon Fraser ran 2:13.11 and is now #9. Behind her is
Bianca Bryant from San Francisco State. She ran 2:13.66 to crack the top 10.
Eileen Stressling of Azusa Pacific opened up her season with a strong 3000/5000 double (we’ll talk about her 5k soon). She ran 9:38.69 and is ahead of where she was last year at this time. She currently sits at #4 on the performance list and is 20 seconds under the provisional mark, essentially securing herself another National Championship appearance in 2019.
Alexa Shindruk from Central Washington was the other top 3000 meter performer from the
weekend. She ran 9:42.19 to the #5 spot on the performance list after the weekend’s results. The senior PR’d in the mile last week (5:09.04) and hit another PR this weekend after a strong cross country season.
You could argue that the best performance from the weekend came from Alaska Anchorage’s
Caroline Kurgat. She broke the collegiate record for Division 2 and would have bettered the
outdoor mark, running 15:28.46. This comes on the heels of running 9:07 last weekend and she is looking to cement her mark within the ranks of all NCAA classifications. We mentioned Stressling earlier and she ran to the #4 best mark on the season in the 5000 meters with her time of 16:43.33 from the weekend. She continued her strong start to the 2019 campaign as she has likely qualified for Nationals in both events.
Liberty Kickoff 2019
We have a new leader in the mile after the weekend and it comes with a real track time and not a converted one. Leah Hanle of Mount Olive ran 4:53.34 on her way to a seven second win. Her time is a new personal best and put hers four seconds ahead when she ran the mile last year. Whether or not Hanle will decide to run the mile at Nationals or stick to the 5000 and 3000 is still unbeknownst to us, but I’d gamble and say she goes 3k/5k like last year.
Pittsburg State Invitational
Southwest Baptist’s freshman Elysia Burgos continues her strong start to her very young track
and field career. After running 4:57 before Christmas break, Burgos came back and ran 2:18.94 last week and then came back this weekend with a two second personal best in the mile of 4:55.97. She’s currently #4 on the performance list.
2019 Spire Midwest Open Indoor T&F Meet
Andra Lehotay is back after competing in the mile at Nationals the lpast two years. She ran
4:58.58 last weekend and then came back to run 4:56.99 this weekend to move up on the
performance list to #6. She was an All-American as a freshman in the mile and a
two-time All-American at 1500 meters.
Drury’s Claire McCune continues her phenomenal season. After placing 16th at Cross Country Nationals, she came out after Christmas break to run 10:13 (a personal best) last week. She followed that up with personal bests in the mile (5:00.74) and then 2:25.73 for 800 meters. Her mile time converts down to 4:57.80 due to the track size placing her at #9 in the country for the moment.
Mines Division II Invite & Multi
Taryn Ceglowski of Sioux Falls gives us our first altitude converted time of the weekend after
she ran 5:10.36 in Golden, Colorado for a three-second victory. Her time converts down to
4:58.14 which is good enough for a #10 on the NCAA D2 leaderboard.
Tom Hathaway Distance Classic
Indianapolis’ Mickayla Wenzel ran a personal best of 5:01. She took 2nd place overall at the meet just a week after running a personal best of 10:11 in the 3000. In fact, all three of her
races this season have been the best times of her career. Her 5:01 converts down to 4:58.61
which dips underneath the provisional mark and is #11 on the provisional list.
JDL College Meet Madness
Flagler’s Heloise Duffie De Tassigny is the last athlete we’ll talk about this week as she is #12
on the performance list and also dipped underneath the mile provisional mark. She also ran in
the 5:01 range and saw a five second improvement from the week before. Her time converts
down to 4:58.69.