Track and field teams end season with impressive finishes at OACs

May 3rd, 2012

Men’s Track and Field

[Written by Gabriella Kreuz]

In most seasons, men’s team scores of 76 and 73 for the John Carroll University track and field teams would be enough for  a top-five finish at the Ohio Athletic Conference Championships. Despite the efforts by the Blue Streaks, the men’s and women’s teams finished in sixth and eighth place, respectively, this past weekend at the OAC Championships in Wilmington, Ohio.

On the men’s side, junior Mike Minjock jumped a 2012 NCAA Division III-best 7.46 meters to win his first OAC title in the long jump event. Minjock also picked up third place finishes in both the triple jump and 100-meter dash events as well.

“I knew I was ready physically and mentally and I had my best performance of the season,” said Minjock. “My goal is to be the national champion. I feel great, and after the way conference went, I expect to perform even better at the national championships.”

Senior Steven Borowy earned All-OAC status by finishing in third place in the javelin throw event, with a personal best of 52.40 meters. In the pole vault, sophomore Cory Biro cleared 4.25 meters to lock in an eighth place finish.

In the lengthy 10,000-meter run, senior Jake Smith claimed first place while junior Nick Wojtasik came in at seventh place with respective times of 32:11 and 33:15.

“A conference championship had always been one of my goals,” said Smith on his first-ever OAC title. “As the season went on and I kept getting better, I was excited that I finally had the chance to win.”

In the 4×800-meter relay, the quartet of freshman John Cameron, junior Pat Burns, junior Anthony Colbert and sophomore Vadim Spasiuk took home a fifth-place finish with a time of 7:58.639, just .006 behind fourth.

Senior Will Rial stepped his game up in the 3,000-meter steeplechase, as he took third place with a finish time of 9:40.92, good enough to earn all-OAC status. He ran 9:40.92 for a third place finish for all-OAC status.

At the end of the two-day event,  the Blue Streaks finished in sixth place with 76 total team points. Powerhouse Mount Union came out on top with 143 points, while Baldwin- Wallace (115 points), Ohio Northern (112), Heidelberg (98) and Marietta (93) finished in second through fifth place, respectively.


Women’s Track and Field

[Written by Zach Mentz]

Despite only finishing in eighth place out of 10 teams this past weekend at the Ohio Athletic Conference Championships, the John Carroll University women’s track and field team put together numerous impressive performances, bringing a close to another exciting year for the Blue Streaks.

With the OAC Championships taking place in Wilmington, Ohio, the Blue Streaks were led by freshman Emily Mapes and sophomore Gabriella Kreuz. Mapes finished in first place in the 3,000-meter steeplechase with an impressive finish time of 11:00.24, while Kreuz also finished in first place in the 1,500-meter run and a final time of 4:40.83. Because of her performance, Kreuz was named the Dave Lehman Most Outstanding Distance Athlete Award winner.

“I didn’t really anticipate being honored with that kind of award so soon, especially at the OAC Championships,” said Kreuz. “It was just one of those occasions where my brain and body were on the same page, and I ran the way my coaches and teammates believed I could all along.”

In the 4×800-meter relay event, junior Maureen Creighton, freshman Haley Turner and sophomores Nicki Bohrer and Kreuz claimed first place with a time of 9:19.94, a mark eight seconds better than the next. The same quartet also finished in third place in the 4×400-meter relay with a time of 4:06.29

Senior Megan Lutz also reeled in more points for the Blue Streaks as she finished in fifth place in the 5,000-meter run with a time of 18:28.28.

“I always missed practice during its normal time and spent most of the season running at night by myself,” said Lutz. “But the coaches, especially [assistant coach] Kyle Basista, really worked with me to make my last season a possibility.

Mapes finished just behind Lutz, in sixth place, with a finish time of 18:19.27.

The University of Mount Union Purple Raiders won the OAC Championships with a collective 146 points, while Baldwin-Wallace (101 points) and Marietta took second and third place, respectively. JCU finished in eighth with a total of 73 points.

The Blue Streaks are still a young team and should have an exciting year again next spring.