Necks have record-setting weekend

Michaela Busch throws javelin at home meet.


Michaela Busch throws javelin at home meet.

Brie Coder, Copy Editor

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DES MOINES, Iowa — Since Wednesday, the Western Illinois track and field teams have yet again added many more accomplishments to their season.

The Leathernecks engraved their new marks and times during the four-day competition (Wednesday-Saturday) at the Drake Relays, hosted by the Drake University Bulldogs. Several of Western’s other star athletes also competed on Thursday and Friday in the Kip Janvrin Open, in Indianola, Iowa.

Sophomore Michaela Busch just couldn’t be stopped in the heptathlon events, as she took third place on Wednesday and Thursday. She set a collegiate best in the 100-meter hurdles (14.90) and in the 200-meter dash (26.25), while placing fourth in both the high jump (1.63 meters) and shot put (10.33 meters). Busch’s overall total points in these events were 4,805.

Head coach Diane Wholey was quite proud of Busch and her accomplishments this weekend.

“I am very pleased with Michaela Bush’s performances in the heptathlon over the past two days,” Wholey said.

“Michaela handles the transitions between events very well, and it worked in her favor. She finished in third place and as the No. 2 collegian. There were other hepts from our conference competing, and she stayed ahead of all of them which is tremendous as we get closer to the conference championships.”

Continuing with the Drake Relays, Friday had impressive new stats for both individual field events, and group track events. For the field events, freshman Nick Olson threw 52.63 meters in the javelin, as well as senior Jasmine Brown jumped her way to 5.61 meters in the long jump.

The final highlight from Friday was in the women’s 4X400. Sophomores Megan Reed and Bo Brasseur, as well as Busch and senior Jamieria Stennis clocked in at 3:58.63.

Meanwhile, on day one of the Kip Janvrin Open on Thursday, junior Jasmine Swanagan and Olson placed eighth and 10th in their respective events. Swanagan posted a 44.19-meter hammer throw and Olson recorded a 14.44-meter attempt in the shot put.

Friday saw some more top-10 results at the same invite, which was also the last day for several of the Purple and Gold members to compete before heading back to the Drake Relays. Junior Darius Patterson, sophomores Josh Kirby and Abigail Richter placed second in the 100-meter dash, 110-meter hurdles and 3,000-meter steeplechase.

Additionally, freshman Victoria Adesola came in second in the triple jump (10.49 meters). She also competed in the 100-meter hurdles with a time of 15.66. Sophomore Michael Rinella set a new personal best in the pole vault with 4.45 meters.

Saturday concluded the Drake Relays. Teaming up in the sprint medley relay, senior Raytoria Richardson and Brasseur ran 200 meters each, Stennis added 400 meters of her own and freshman Hailey Tranchitella clocked in the final 800 meters. They finished with a time of 4:07.84. Brown ended the weekend with a 11.73-meter effort in the triple jump.

With such a pleasing, yet hardworking season, Western will wrap up its regular season schedule at the Northern Illinois Huskie Classic next Friday, May 4.

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