Track and field to compete under the lights in Musco Twilight



Darius Patterson sprints out during practice.

Michael Harms , Courier Staff

IOWA CITY, Iowa — The Western Illinois University track and field teams will travel to Iowa City to compete in the Musco Twilight this weekend.

They are competing with seven other teams including: Iowa, Iowa Central CC, Loyola, Minnesota State, Northern Illinois and Northern Iowa. The meet starts at noon with the men’s shot put, women’s discus and women’s pole vault. The early running sections start with the 100-meter hurdles at 1:55 p.m. and the premier sections start at 4:15 p.m. with the 400-meter relay. A full schedule of events is located at on the track and field schedule page.

The midpoint meet for the Leathernecks outdoor season plays a pivotal role in the future of the team. It will show what they must do in order to qualify for The Summit League Championship later in May.

For Western, all eyes will be on Nicole Beebe who enters this meet as the front runner for the 3000-meters. Her season best of 9:55.00 leads the field. She finished third at this meet two years ago.

At the start of the meet, Darius Patterson will have his first chance to get some points for the Leathernecks in the 100-meter dash. With a time of 10.61, he is ranked third for the field and looking to improve.

This meet will not be easy as Iowa is returning with 12 winning athletes and 10 athletes that won their events last year at this same event. But some Leathernecks have other plans. Mainly the duo of Isaiah Lesure and Gabe Cheeks.

These two first time field athletes for Western will compete in the long jump on Saturday and are ranked third and sixth, respectively. Lesure who is a senior, is experiencing this track and field competition for the first time, as well as Cheeks. For whatever reason, it does not seem to hinder their performance as both athletes look to rank high for Western.

Josh Kirby looks to make waves at this meet, too. In the 400-meter hurdles, he is ranked fourth in the field and set a previous personal record two years ago at this same meet. So did Khalyia Lawson who also finished fifth two years ago for the Purple and Gold.

Another to look out for is Bo Brasseur, who will compete in the 200-meter dash in hopes to better her fourth place ranking. Brasseur is coming off a record-breaking long jump performance in Columbia, Mo., where she set the school record with a 6.23 meter jump, which landed her on the top-20 list in the nation.

This Saturday, the Leathernecks have another chance to go up against the best and test their limits. What they come away with will be fun to watch.