By Brad Blume
Sports Information Director
South Dakota School of Mines
CHADRON, Neb. --- The South Dakota School of Mines men’s and women’s track teams were in action this past weekend for the first time in over a month as a complete unit. The Hardrockers competed at the Chadron State Eagle Twilight Meet Friday in Chadron, Neb.
The Hardrockers haven’t been together as a full track squad since the beginning of December at the Early Bird Meet in Spearfish, S.D.
The ‘Rocker thinclads had one event winner and several others place in a number of different events at Friday’s meet.
Senior pole vaulter Chandler Caldwell (Thornton, Colo.) cleared a height of 15-feet-1-inch to own a share of first place and win the event. The SDM school record holder (15-7) tied with Lee Diede of Black Hills State.
In other events for the men, senior Colin Royer (Ft. Pierre, S.D.) raced to a third-place finish in the 200-meter dash, clocking a time of 23.74 seconds while teammate Mark Wager (a sophomore from Gettysburg, S.D.) was fourth with a 23.78. Sophomore Jason Simmons (New Underwood, S.D.) clocked a 24.29 for sixth place in that race and sophomore Dustin Jordan (Pierre, S.D.) took seventh with a 24.72.
Wager also place in the 400, grabbing second after a time of 51.94. Royer and Jordan both earned spots in the 400 as well. Royer had the sixth fastest time with a 53.44 and Jordan was ninth best clocking a 53.93.
“Royer and Wager improved their 200 times and Royer and Jordan improved their 400 times,” said Hardrocker head coach Jerry Schafer. “It’s tough to improve those times on a short track. So that was really huge for us.”
The Hardrockers struggled a tad in the distance events, but sophomore Marcus Moor (Kadoka, S.D.) managed a fifth-place showing in the 3,000 run in a time of 9 minutes 49.13 seconds, which was an improved time from previous races, and senior Rob Hahn (Sioux Falls, S.D.) was 14th in the mile with a mark of 4:51.67.
Senior Tyler Flattum (Bristol, S.D.) got through the prelims of the 55 high hurdles and clocked an 8.10 for sixth place in the finals while junior Matt Deardoff (Brandon, S.D.) was fifth in the shot put after a throw of 46-10.25 (10-inch improvement from last year) and freshman Everett Brill (Elko, Nev.) earned ninth in the weight throw with a toss of 38-5.
On the women’s side, junior Ashley Stewart (Scotland, S.D.) was the highest placer for the Lady Hardrockers, earning a share of third place in the high jump after clearing 5-1.
“We were very pleased with Ashley Stewart,” Schafer said. “She was excited to get that height and even had a good attempt at the (NAIA) provisional (mark).”
Sophomore Katrina Donovan (Martin, S.D.) earned places in both the shot put and the weight throw. She threw the shot 34-9.5 for eighth place and got a distance of 31-4.5 in the weight throw for seventh place.
In the distance events, the SDM thinclads again struggled a little. Freshmen Kendra Crisman (Rapid City, S.D.) and Brittney Hovdenes (Rapid City, S.D.) both competed in the 800 run. Crisman took ninth with a 2:37.05 while Hovdenes clocked a 2:38.29 for ninth. Fellow freshman Kim Kerce (Colorado Springs, Colo.) competed in the 3,000 run earning eighth place in a time of 6:52.07 and junior earned sixth in the same event with a mark of 6:37.67
The Hardrockers will be back in action Friday at the Dave Little Invitational at Black Hills State. Field events start at 2:30 p.m. with running events to get underway at 3:30 p.m.
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