Geneva, Ohio – On the final day of competition at the NCAA DIII Outdoor Track and Field Championships, three Pioneers received All-American honors; Senior Zach Lee, along with juniors Charlie Gifford and Matt Hokanson.
Zach Lee, a senior from Franklin, Wis., scored three points for the Pioneers by placing sixth in the 1500m run. Lee finished in the heat of 12 runners crossing the line in 3:51.55. An indoor track and field champion in the mile, Lee capped his career off receiving his first outdoor track and field All-American honors. Lee leaves a lasting impression on UW-Platteville, breaking the school record a few weeks prior to the national championships running 3:44.25.
In the 110m hurdles, Charlie Gifford fought his way onto the All-American podium. Gifford's preliminary time of 14.46 seconds was eighth coming into finals, and eighth place he took. Scoring one point for the Pioneers, Gifford ran 14.58 seconds in the final heat of the 110m hurdles to round off his junior season of outdoor track and field. Gifford was also an All-American in the 60m hurdles during the indoor track and field season.
Matt Hokanson made his way into the final heat of the 400m hurdles running 53.33 seconds in the preliminaries. In the finals, Hokanson completed a faulty race where he clipped several of the hurdles. He crossed the line in eighth place in 56.44 seconds to become an All-American for the first time in his career. Both Gifford and Hokanson will be returning to the Pioneer track and field team next year as seniors, stirring forward a young group of hurdles at UW-Platteville.
The Pioneer men's track and field team finished tied for 14th place as a team with 17 points. UW-Eau Claire men's track and field team won the championships decisively with 68 points. MIT took second place with 38 points, and Mount Union took third with 36 points. UW-Platteville was the third highest placing WIAC institution, behind UW-Eau Claire (1st) and UW-Oshkosh (4th).