By Casey Pickard
Lewis & Clark’s track and field team had some major achievements this season. Three Pioneer track athletes placed in the SPU final qualifier at the Feb. 25 meet in Seattle, WA. In the women’s 400 meter dash, Alaina King ’19 posted a 57.63 time and placed second, with less than one second behind the first place finisher. In the men’s 400 meter dash, Bryce Johnson ’19 placed fourth crossing the finish line with a time of 50.74 seconds. Finally, although unable to beat her prelim time of 8.18 seconds, Nicole Godbout ’20 placed third in the women’s 60 meter dash posting a time of 8.29. Similar to King, Godbout placed second with less than a second behind the first place finisher in the 200 meter dash.
The next, most exciting meet for the Pios was the March 25 meet in Salem at the Willamette Invitational. Johnson started off the weekend by beating his personal best time by posting a time of 50.31 seconds in the men’s 400 meter dash. Next, Frances Swanson ’17 achieved her fastest time ever by with a time of 4:45.76 which placed her at sixth in the 1500 meter. After that, Jeff Mullins ’18 achieved his best time of the year with a 4:05.77 in the men’s 1,500 meter. To finish off the runners, Miguel Haro Ruiz ’20 set a career-best time by posting a time of 1:58.53 in the men’s 800 meter.
In the field events, Rachel Seagren ’19 also achieved her career best by clearing 10 feet, 10 inches (3.30m) in the women’s pole vault. Her previous best distance was 10 feet, 4.25 inches, which she achieved at the Northwest Conference in 2016. The weekend competition finished with six LC track and field athletes landing as top 10 finishers.
At the March 28 competition in Forest Grove, three Pioneer athletes qualified for the Northwest Conference Championships in April. Noah Avery ’19 seemed to be the star of the event as he moved up a total of four spots with a runner-up performance in javelin and a third-place finish in discus. This gave him a total of 5,810 points. Avery finished the meet by breaking his personal best in the pole vault.
Another weekend of personal bests followed shortly after at the Boyman Invitational in McMinnville, Ore. on April 1. Sean Richardson ’20 clocked a time of 15:34.58 at the men’s 5000 meter and won by about nine seconds. Continuing the freshmen’s streak of finishing in the top 10 this season and also beating her personal best, Samantha Bowen ’20 clocked a time of 5:00.07 in the women’s 1,500 meter. Another personal best set at this competition was a time of 5:16.28 in the 1,500 meters posted by Kiera Crabtree ’20, . Sarah Bucknovitz ’17 finished fourth and also beat her personal best in the Northwest Conference women’s discus with a 127 feet, seven inches (38.90m) throw.
The entire team will be competing for the LC Invite on April 18. While Noah Avery ’19, David Lovitz ’17 and Morgan Taylor ’19 compete on April 11 and 12 in the NWC Championships Multi-Events at Pacific University.