Seven Pioneer men qualify to NCAA DIII Outdoor National Championships

Seven Pioneer men qualify to NCAA DIII Outdoor National Championships

Platteville, Wis. – Seven Pioneer student-athletes will compete at the NCAA DIII Outdoor National Championships. The championships will take place at host school UW-La Crosse Thursday, May 24 – Saturday, May 25. For a full schedule of events click here.

In the 5,000m and 10,000m run, Walker Rynes qualified at No. 10 and No. 18 in each event respectively. Rynes ran a qualifying time of 14:24.71 in the 5,000m run at North Central College's Dr. Keeler Meet on Thursday, May 10. As for the 10,000m run, Rynes established a qualifying time earlier in the season, running 30:20.90 at the Phil esten Challenge at UW-La Crosse on April 21. Both of Rynes' qualifying times established personal bests for the senior from Norwalk, Wisconsin.

Zach Lee, a junior from Franklin, Wisconsin qualified in the 1500m running 3:50.43 at the WIAC Outdoor Track and Field Championships. Lee established a personal best time by just over two seconds, compared to his previous best time of 3:52.52. Lee is ranked at No. 10 going into the championships.

Freshman Rodrick McMiller qualified in the 100m and 200m dash. The Chicago native qualified in the 100m dash at the WIAC Outdoor Track and Field Championships, running a season best time of 10.52 seconds in the final heat. McMiller's 200m qualifying performance also came during the WIAC championships where he ran 21.06 seconds in the final heat. McMiller holds the UW-Platteville 100m and 200m school records, ranking nationally at No. 5 in the 100m dash, No. 1 in the 200m dash. McMiller, along with teammates Paul Rapp, Ryan Swanson, and Zach Frei, missed qualifying in the 4x100m relay by two spots. The relay ran a season best of 41.47 at the UW-La Crosse Final Qualifier on Thursday, May 17.

Making his first national championships appearance, Matt Hokanson (Cedarburg, Wisconsin) will compete in the 400m hurdles. Hokanson qualified with a time of 53.05 at the North Central College Dr. Keeler Meet on May 10. He established a personal best time that day, moving him to No. 14 in the national rankings.

A sophomore high jumper from Monticello, Iowa, Noah Steiner qualified with a jump of 2.09m (6-10.25) at the UW-Platteville Open on April 7 to tie the school record. Steiner holds a tie for the outdoor high jump school record which was established by Dan Jansen in 1989. Steiner is currently tied in national rankings at No. 9.

Alex Walechka, a sophomore from Winona, Minnesota qualified in the discus with a throw of 49.33m (161-10) at the Augustana Twilight Last Chance Meet on May 17. This will be Walechka's first national championships appearance. 

Last but not least, in the decathlon, junior Cody Faust (Monroe, Wisconsin) qualified with 6,496 points at the WIAC Outdoor Track and Field Championships. Teammate Jacob Hirsbrunner also qualified in the event, however Hirsbrunner will not be participating in the competition. The two day event consisting of 10 events requires athletes to compete on the track as well as in field events. Faust has improved on his own school record from last year, increasing his point total from 6,454 to 6,496 points. He comes into the national championships ranked at No. 8.