In the final home meet of the year, CSU’s men’s and women’s track and field teams both claimed victory. Strong performances from the start of the meet gave the Rams an early lead and they never looked back.
Junior Katie Lloyd won the high jump with a personal record of 5 feet, 8 inches. The mark qualified Lloyd for her third different event in the NCAA Regional Championships, while also meeting one of her personal goals.
“It’s been a goal of mine for a while to jump that height, and I finally did that.”
Lloyd said. “Watching my teammates do well in front of me made me do better.”
The meet marked the end of the home career of coach Del Hessel. Lloyd downplayed the event because Hessel told the team at the beginning of the season that his main goal was to win the conference title.
“It was nice to win, but conference is our real goal,” Lloyd said.
Lloyd was not the only high jumper to perform well for the Rams, with her teammates claiming the second, third and fourth highest marks in the high jump.
CSU’s throwers finished their strong regular season on both the men’s and women’s side. Seniors Katie Hansen and Jill McCormick took the top two spots in the discus, while senior Matt McKinney and juniors Nate Heyrman and Trey Eder claimed first, second and third place in the shot put.
In his first meet of the season, fifth year senior Josh Glaab cruised to victory in the 5,000-meters. Glaab had missed much of the season due to an injury to his achilles tendon.
“I’ve been injured for awhile, so it’s nice just to be out here racing.” Glaab said. “I love hanging out at meets. The weather is so nice, and this is my last home meet.”
Another senior, Amanda Huddleston-Miller, also did well in her final home meet, winning the triple jump and qualifying for regionals in the process. The younger Rams excelled as well on Saturday, with a trio of underclassmen sweeping the 1,500-meters.
Freshman Kristen Hemphill finished in first place, with sophomore April Thomas taking second, and freshmen Heather Loeske taking third. These individual victories went a long way towards the team victory, but there were also a number of top-three finishes that earned points for the Rams.
Because this was a rare home meet, Ram athletes benefited by staying in their homes the night before instead of an unfamiliar hotel room.
“Getting to sleep in your own bed the night before a meet is a wonderful thing,” said junior Katie Lloyd.
While familiar beds may have given CSU the edge this week, they will be on the road again next week competing in three different meets in different states. The Drake Relays will take place in Des Moines, Iowa, while the University of New Mexico and Stanford University are each hosting meets featuring Ram athletes.