Calvin Track and Field competes well at Calvin Relays and GVSU Big Meet


Photo courtesy Calvin SID

Last weekend the Knights competed at GVSU’s Big Meet on Friday night and at home on Saturday at the Calvin Relays. At the Big Meet, the event of the day was the men’s 5000 meter run. Every Calvin runner who competed in this event ran a personal best.

According to senior leader Erik Holstege, “The main focus of the indoor season is development, particularly for the younger athletes. That is not to say that performance in competition is unimportant, just that a solid upward trend throughout the indoor season is of more interest than blazing fast times (we want those in mid-late outdoor). Having both is, of course, always nice.”

Sophomore Lauren Strohbehn and junior McKenzie Diemer both had stand-out performances in the 5000 meters and the mile, respectively. Strohbehn ran her first 5K of the season in 17:34.93, a personal best by 36 seconds. Diemer ran 5:03.03, running her second personal best in as many weeks.

At the home meet on Saturday, first-year student Ethan Valentine ran a 49.43 in the 400 meter dash, an incredible time considering the fact that his main event on the track is the 800 meters. This time places him 16th on the NCAA national qualifying list. In March, the top 15 men and the top 17 women in Division III will go on to compete at the national meet.

Junior Jon Cok, coming back from a year off of track, jumped 6 feet 5 inches in the high jump, the current conference best. Senior Joel Ooms had a personal best of 23.73 in the 200 meter dash, an impressive feat considering that he is coming back from a long injury.

In the 3000 meters senior Steven Haagsma won with a time of 8:40.82. He was followed in the Calvin line-up by sophomore Jordan Kramer, who ran an incredible 26 second personal best.

Other Calvin athletes who won their events include junior Carissa Weis in the triple jump, senior Stephen Tubergen in the mile and senior Erik Holstege in the 60 meter hurdles, the long jump and the triple jump.

All in all, this weekend was a good one for the Knights. Development was made on all levels as the upward trend toward the outdoor season continues.