SEWARD, Neb. – For her pair of automatic national qualifying times at the Dutcher Memorial Classic, Jenna Esch has been named the GPAC/Hauff Mid-America Sports Women’s Outdoor Track Athlete of the Week, as announced on Wednesday (April 25). Esch has earned a conference weekly award for the first time in her career. Throughout the 2022-23 indoor and outdoor seasons, Concordia University Track & Field athletes have combined for 11 GPAC athlete of the week awards. Esch is the fifth different Bulldog women’s athlete to earn the award on the track in 2023.
A Hastings, Neb., native and Saint Cecilia High School alum, Esch starred last week while adding her name to the national qualifying field. Esch clocked an automatic national qualifying (and personal best) 400-meter time of 56.74 (third place out of 25 runners). She also ran the leadoff leg for a 4x400 meter relay that qualified for nationals in a time of 3:53.60 in the meet at Doane. Finally, Esch ran the 200 meters in 26.24, good for fourth place. On the current GPAC lists, Esch ranks second in the 400 meters (18th nationally) while the 4x4 ranks No. 1 (seventh nationally).
A two-time All-American, Esch moved to No. 3 on the program’s all-time 400-meter list behind only Carol Bailey and teammate Rachel Battershell. Esch was also part of a 4x4 from 2022 that ranks No. 2 (3:48.93) on the school’s all-time list.
Esch and her teammates will be back to action this week between the Drake Relays (April 27-29) and the Nebraska Wesleyan Prairie Wolf Invite (April 28-28).
2022-23 GPAC Athletes of the Week
April 26 – Jenna Esch (Track)
April 19 – Lauren Dawson (Track)
April 12 – Adrianna Rodencal (Track); Zach Zohner (Field)
April 5 – Jordan Koepke (Track)
March 29 – Rylee Haecker (Track)
Feb. 15 – Josie Puelz (Field); Adrianna Rodencal (Track)
Feb. 8 – Calvin Rohde (Track)
Feb. 1 – Calvin Rohde (Track)
Dec. 14 – Amy Richert (Field)