Platteville, Wis. – The University of Wisconsin – Platteville hosted day two of the WIAC Outdoor Track and Field Championships Saturday, May 4. The Pioneers won four events, with numerous podium finishes, rounding out a fifth place team finish for the Pioneer men and a sixth place team finish for the Pioneer women.
The four Pioneer champions came from two track events, 800m and 400m hurdles, as well as two field events, the high jump and discus. Winning the 800m run, Johanna Meister ran 2:15.01 to be awarded with her first conference champion medal. Meister also finished second in the 1500m run with a personal best time of 4:40.06. In the 400m hurdles, Katie Schilling cleared hurdles with grace as she ran to a first place finish in 1:02.75. Schilling placed in the 100m hurdles, taking sixth place with a time of 14.80 seconds.
A spattering of Pioneers made their way to the podium, finishing in the top eight of their respective event. Cody Faust scored 6,701 points in the decathlon to place second, and breaking his own school record. Faust ran 15.75 seconds in the 110m hurdles, threw 31.85m (104-6), pole vaulted 4.47m (14-8), and ran 4:54.83 in the 1500m on day two of competition.
Also placing second, Zach Lee ran 3:49.95 in the 1500m run. Lee, along with the event winner Kyler Lueck from UW-Eau Claire, broke the facility record of 3:52.95 set in 2015 by Dawson Miller of UW-Whitewater. Lee finished in third place in the 800m run with a time of 1:53.77.
Charlie Gifford took second in the 110m hurdles, running a time of 14.63 seconds. Gifford was also a member of the Pioneer's 4x100m relay which took sixth place. Gifford, along with Jacob Downing, Zach Frei, and Alec Burcham ran for the first time together at the conference championships.
Two Pioneers from the 5,000m men's and women's races made it to the podium. Katie Wardinski finished in second place with a time of 18:05.00. Zack Klokow finished in the men's 5,000m run in 15:01.16 for third place.
In the final heat of the men's 400m dash, Burcham ran for fourth place with a time of 48.53 seconds, a personal best time. Sean Komro placed in the 400m hurdles, finishing in 56.45 seconds for fifth place.
In the finals of the women's 200m dash, sophomore Gwen Orr placed fifth with a time of 25.57 seconds. Orr took ninth place in the 100m dash finals, running a personal best time of 12.55 seconds.
Orr was also a member of the 4x100m relay, along with Antgentina Bean, Haley Ott, and Chenoa Stuhr. The relay ran for fourth place with a time of 48.60 seconds, re-establishing their school record previously set earlier in the season.
In the shot put, Rachel Beuthin took fourth place with a throw of 13.77m (45-2.25) and Brianna Hall place sixth with 13.45m (44-1.5), a personal best throw. Beuthin also made it to the podium in the discus, finishing fifth on the day with 39.50m (129-7). In the men's discus, sophomore Alex Girard finished in fifth place with a personal best throw of 49.17m (161-4). Freshman Ben Veverka finished in sixth place with a personal best throw of 48.30m (158-5).
Men's triple jump finished with two podium placers from the Pioneers, both having personal best performances. Damani White took sixth place with a jump of 14.06m (46-1.5) and senior Brian Spaeth took seventh with a jump of 14.02m (46-0).
The women's and men's 4x400m relays capped off the championship weekend. The women's 4x400m relay of Katheryn Holter, Kayla Schneider, Meister, and Schilling ran for seventh place with a time of 4:05.68. The men's 4x400m relay of John Huntley, Frei, Kyle Buechner, and Burcham ran for fourth place with a time of 3:17.28, a season best time for the Pioneer men.
The WIAC Outdoor Track and Field Championships teams scores reflected a fifth place team finish by the Pioneer men, scoring 94.5 points. The Pioneer women's track and field team placed sixth with a team score of 64 points.
Junior Matt Hokanson was honored at the championships as the UW-Platteville Larry Zirgibel All-Sportsmanship Team honoree. Senior Madi Shafer was recognized for the women's track and field member Larry Zirgibel All-Sportsmanship Team honoree. Nominated for the Max Sparger Scholar-Athlete, Zach Lee was recognized for his outstanding excellence in academics and well as athletics. Katie Wardinski was nominated and recognized at the championships for the Judy Kruckman Scholar-Athlete award.
The UW-Platteville track and field team will begin post season meets, beginning with two weeks of last chance qualifying meets for the NCAA DIII National Outdoor Track and Field Championships to take place May 23 – 25.