DES MOINES, Iowa – The 2021 Drake Relays are now in the books. After 13 Bulldogs competed at Drake Stadium in Des Moines, Iowa, on Friday, another 12 put themselves up against major competition on Saturday. Jacob Cornelio won the college division hammer throw competition while again eclipsing 200 feet. On the women’s side of things, Addie Shaw achieved a season best in the hammer.
Over the past three days, the Prairie Wolf Invite and the Drake Relays served as the final outings prior to next week’s GPAC championship meet. Head Coach Matt Beisel’s squads currently carry NAIA national rankings of No. 1 for women and No. 8 for men.
As noted by assistant coach Mark Samuels, the chilly and windy conditions at Drake did not lend to lightning fast times on the track. Said Samuels, “We have some people really ready to run. It should be a fun week and fun last month of the season.”
Cornelio’s consistency has been impressive. The native of Elk Grove, Calif., has routinely whirled the hammer more than 200 feet (personal best of 211’ 3”). His winning mark at the Drake Relays measured in at 208’ 5.” Cornelio continues to lead the NAIA in the event by nearly 15 feet.
The efforts from Shaw (177’ 8”) and Sarah Ragland (174’ 2”) were solid on Saturday. They placed seventh and ninth, respectively, in the hammer competition. They rubbed elbows with mostly NCAA Division II and junior college competition at the Drake Relays. The only other Concordia female to compete in a field event on Saturday was Amy Richert, who cleared 5’ 3” in the high jump (seventh place).
The Bulldogs also entered 4x400 meter relays for both men and women. The men were just off a ‘B’ standard time while clocking in at 3:17.99. The group included Cade Kleckner, Jacob Jennings, Henry Reimer and Colton Meyer. Concordia was DQ’ed in the women’s 4x4. Fortunately, the Bulldogs already own an automatic national qualifying time in the event.
The most significant highlight on Friday was delivered by Rachel Battershell, who ran a 55.05 in the 400 meters and rose to the top of the NAIA national list. For more on Friday’s happenings, click HERE.
Concordia will have the honor of hosting the 2021 GPAC Outdoor Track & Field Championships. The event will run April 30 – May 1 at Bulldog Stadium. The meet schedule can be viewed HERE. Fans will be permitted to attend the conference meet.