Sprints highlight Pios at Pacific Preview

Sprints highlight Pios at Pacific Preview

FOREST GROVE, Ore. -- The Lewis & Clark women's team earned victories in the 100-meter hurdles and 100 meters to account for a third of the Pioneers event victories at Saturday's Pacific Preview at Hanson Stadium.

Wind, rain and some hail made up the weather throughout the day, affecting competition including the final event of the day, the 4x400 relay, which Lewis & Clark ran solo.

The Pioneers finished third of five teams on the women's side, and fourth in the men's team scores.

"The teams competed very well again with a number of outstanding performances in spite of the stormy weather," said Director of Cross Country/Track and Field Keith Woodard. "When only our team showed up [for the 4x400], the starter commented on how tough they are."

Amelia Jackson, Elisabeth (Boo) Kirkwood, Emily Thompson and Alaina King competed in the event while three others teams registered "did not starts." The team's time was 4:18.41.

Earlier in the meet, Thompson and King joined Jeanie Mullins and Rachelle Locey to beat Linfield by one-hundredth of a second in the 4x100 relay with a 51.40 mark.


Thompson was an individual winner too, taking the 100-meter hurdles in 15.96, while finishing second in the 400-meter hurdles in 1:07.95. Renee D'Espyne was the only sub-13-second time in the 100 meters, finishing at 12.97 to beat the field by two-tenths of a second. She placed fourth in the 200 meters at 27.69.

As successful as the women's 4x100 relay was, the men placed top two as well, finishing second. The quartet of Kodie Artner, Colin Brown, Deion Mock and David Lovitz edged out Pacific to earn eight points for the team total. Brown was top four in the 200 meters individually with a mark of 23.17.

Mock was the pole vault victor with a 4.30-meter leap, clearing the field by three-tenths of a meter.

Lewis & Clark's men's team continued to find a good amount of success in the field events. Erich Roepke took second in the javelin with a 50.05-meter distance on his second throw. Noah Avery (pictured right) placed fifth at 46.20 meters.

Lovitz was the runner-up in the long jump. His final leap of 6.24 meters was less than a tenth of a meter behind George Fox's Will Jones. Avery placed third at 5.97 meters.

"I thought my performance went well for the weather," said Avery, a freshman from Roseburg, Ore. "Our coaches have been working with us to clean up technique and make little improvements. The key for me is getting as much experience as possible."  

"The men were competitive throughout the meet with seconds and thirds," said Woodard. "Several of the races were run through standing water, and the throwing areas and jumping areas were likewise slick and water logged."

The Pios had a lot of success in distance events too. Frances Swanson, Amelia Jackson and Kori Groenveld crossed in 1-2-3 fashion in the women's 1,500-meter run. Swanson's lead time was 5:03.34. In the same event for the men, Jeff Mullins was the runner-up at 4:13.69, followed by George Shoemaker's 4:18.85.

Angie Epifano placed second in the 5,000 meters, edging out Courtney Beard of Linfield by four-hundredths of a second. Her time was fast enough to qualify for the Northwest Conference Track and Field Championships.

"There were hard conditions during the 5,000, but with the help of my teammates, I was able to have a pretty good first performance," said Epifano, whose time qualifys her for April's Northwest Conference Track and Field Championships. "I'm excited to see myself and the rest of my teammates develop for the rest of the season."

Kirkwood was top three in the three-racer field of the 800 meters, running 2:31.95, seven-tenths of a second behind second place Katie Radcliffe of Linfield. Taylor Hudson finished first in her flight of the women's javelin, placing sixth in the finals. Mullins and Locey placed fifth and sixth, respectively, in the long jump. Mullins was also fifth in the triple jump, one spot behind Marler, who was fourth.

Lewis & Clark gets to compete at home next weekend, hosting the Spring Break Open on Mar. 18-19 at Eldon Fix Track at Griswold Stadium. The throws will be completed at Clackamas Community College on Friday before the rest of the events start Saturday at 9 a.m. It is a good warm-up for all Northwest Conference teams, as Eldon Fix Track will host the NWC Championships on Apr. 22-23.