BVU track athletes set multiple personal records, break BVU records


Coach Scott Anderson

Senior Brennan Dostal by Coach Scott Anderson

Tanner Frost, Sports Editor

A month into the Buena Vista University (BVU) Men’s and Women’s Track and Field Seasons, the Beavers have gotten off to a hot start.

The team is making great use of their signature phrase, “Better Than Yesterday” as they have been setting personal records in multiple events almost every single meet.

Even though the team boasts the many younger members, every event has showcased strong lineups for the Beavers and in some cases, breaking BVU records and earning national honors.

Senior Garrett Rohlk and junior Drew Beall, the two main throwers on the Men’s team, have set high standards for themselves. Rholk’s first throw of the season landed at 16.58 meters in the Dordt Open on the January 13. He set a new school record with his throw putting him at 40th furthest throw in the nation, at the D3 level. Since then, he has once again broken the school record with a weight throw of 16.90 meters.

Meanwhile, Beall threw a 15.06 meter shotput at the Prairie Wolf Invite, shattering the old school record he was tied for by 11 inches. His distance slotted him at the 34th farthest throw at the time in Division 3 athletics.

Freshman Erik Kilgore has set his sights on big goals, already throwing an impressive 13.60 meters.

Rohlk is looking forward to continuing the success of both himself and the team as the season moves into mid-February.

“For the team looking forward, we look ready to go. Conference is next weekend and the coaches are excited with recent performances. We have begun to taper in training with our coaches and Coach Ryder so that we are at our peak competitively for the conference meet. I think we will have some great performances these next few weeks,” said Rohlk.

For the women, thrower Cristyn Eischeid is enjoying a successful season so far, setting her meet best at 12.17 meters in shotput. She also has a PR of 14.34 meters in the weight throw event as well. Along the way, she’s already picked up numerous “Athlete of the Meet” accolades to add to her impressive start. Eischied just missed out on the top spot during the Dakota Wesleyan Open, but claimed a solid 2nd place.

For the sprinters, a young core group continues to show improvement and commitment to the program, setting numerous PR’s. Brennan Dostal, 60 and 400 yard dash sprinter for the men’s team, ranks in the NCAA D3 Top 50 for a 7.01 second 60 yard dash time. This puts him at 41st in the nation.

Kylie Johnston of the women’s squad has set two personal records in her events: 27.58 seconds in the 200 meter sprint, and taking a 4th place finish in the 60 meter sprint with a time of 8.27 seconds at the Darren Young Classic.

Long distance runners Brayden Collins, Alexis Koetters, Victoria Hodge, Allyson Ervin, Alex Loerts, Blake Patten, and more have all continuously improved their times and busted their past personal records. The same applies to the relay teams for both squads.

Junior hurdler Brittni Thomas has also shown she’s capable of achieving greatness by the end of the season in the 60 meter hurdles, finishing at a quick 9.63 seconds. Thomas continues to place in the Top 5 frequently, and is hunting a 1st place finish some time soon.

Brooke Runneberg claimed an “Athlete of the Meet” award with the top high jump of 1.55 meters during the first meet of the season.

For the men’s jumping group, Jeremiah Rice stands out with a long jump PR of 6.24 meters, as well as a mark of 12.28 meters in the triple jump.

February 10 and 11, the Beavers competed in the two day NJCAA Regional Meet at BVU’s Dennis Young Indoor Track. Since the event does not allow squads to collect team points, the focus shifted more to besting personal times and setting PR’s.

Brennan Dostal continued his string of strong showings by setting a personal best in the 200 meter dash with a time of 22.51. This places him at the fourth fastest in the IIAC for the event.

Fellow sprinter Casey Lamle also shaved .20 seconds off of his best. Blake Patten’s run in the 400 meter dash as well as Alex Loerts’ time in the mile are PR’s for the duo. The men’s throwers continued to showcase their talents as well.

The women’s team saw six members post new personal records in the meet. Brooke Runneberg tied her high jump mark once again, which won her the first meet of the season. Long jumper Destine Butturff finished with a mark of 7.83 meters, which is a PR as well as a second place finish. Emily Hoesing, Tara Harris, and Elena Vahnenko all met personal records in the 800 meter dash.

Overall on the day, the team’s set a combined 15 personal records, and retained 3 NCAA Top-50 Rankings.

Both the men and women’s teams are led by Head Coach Colton Slack, who enters his second year in the position. Slack has already coached 11 All-Conference indoor/outdoor performances for the Beavers, and one conference champion. He is assisted by David Hodge and Scott Anderson, both entering their second seasons for BVU. Shane Maier focuses on working with the throwing group. It is his third year at BVU.

Coach Slack and the teams have had great starts to the season, and had a lot of good things to say about the past month.

“The teams has impressed me this month by continuing to improve despite very loaded workouts. We have seen several freshman step up and compete at a very high level. Our upperclassmen are continuing to get better and overall, the team is looking very strong heading into our conference championships,” said Slack.

Slack touched on how important it is for the team to stay healthy during their mid-season run.

“The team can improve by buying into soreness and trusting the process,” said Slack. “Track & Field student-athletes have a very long season and there can be weeks that seems to take forever. So, if our team can continue to trust the process and enjoy the journey, they will see phenomenal results.”