DES MOINES, Iowa – Nine Concordia University track and field athletes tested their mettle at the prestigious Drake Relays in Des Moines, Iowa, on Friday. The Bulldog men’s 4x400 meter relay raced to an automatic national qualifying time, the 4x200 meter relay broke the school record and sophomore Liz King placed eighth among 23 competitors in the javelin.
Six more Bulldogs will be in action on Saturday as part of the final day of the Drake Relays (see schedule at bottom).
The men’s 4x400 meter relay entered the day with a season best time of 3:18.95 and still in search of a national qualifying mark. On Friday the quartet of freshman CJ Muller (leadoff) and seniors Alex Heiden, Ben Hinckfoot and John Cartier (anchor) blazed to a time of 3:14.09, a mark that ranks fourth best in the NAIA.
Overall, the Bulldogs placed 12th out of 29 teams in the College Division, outpacing all three other GPAC 4x4s at the meet despite having a couple runners feeling under the weather.
“Our No. 1 priority was to get the national qualifying mark,” assistant coach Mark Samuels said. “It’s not quite a school record but the main thing was getting the time we needed.”
In the 4x200 meter relay, the senior Garrett Golke, junior Tai Pleasant and seniors Jonathon Becker and Cartier broke the school record by clocking in at 1:27.30. That time placed seventh among the 18 relays in the College Division and bested the previous program record (1:28.20, 1987) by almost a full second.
“It was a pretty good day,” Samuels said. “When you get a national qualifying mark and a school record it’s hard to complain.”
In the javelin, King eclipsed a national qualifying mark once again with her toss of 149’ 8.” The native of Billings, Mont., ranks second in the NAIA (155’ 10”) in the event.
The first event of the day for Concordia began before 9:30 a.m. as the men’s 4x100 meter relay took the track. The foursome of Noah Smith, Golke, Muller and Pleasant placed 16th in their division in a time of 42.24.
9 a.m. – Zach Lurz (discus)
11:05 a.m. – Women’s 4x800 meter relay
12:15 p.m. – Cody Boellstorff / Zach Lurz (hammer throw)