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The Scarlet & Black

Track and Field teams take second place at home

The Grinnell Track team hung with the competition at the Dick Young Classic this past Saturday, April 29, as both the Men’s and Women’s teams took second place.

David Garwood '13 starts strongly out of the blocks during the 400m dash on Saturday of the Dick Young Classic. Photograph taken by Andrew Kelley.

Propelled by a slew of top three finishes on both teams, the men finished with 190 points and the women with 151 points.

The men had five first-place finishes, including two by Sam Goldstein ’11, who won the triple jump with a skip, bound and leap of 41’-4½’’ and was a member of the 4×100-meter relay, which won in a time of 43.90 seconds.

Goldstein was quick to downplay his triple jump success.

“There [were] only five people in the triple jump,” Goldstein said. “But what is really important for me is I jumped better than the week before and so if I can jump better than I did the week before than I’m happy with how I did.”

No one was downplaying their relay victory. They struggled both to win and even to get a full team.

“For a while we didn’t have a person for our fourth leg. So, we did some trial runs at our last meet and Sam was the guy we decided,” said relay team member Scott Phillips ’11, who also placed third in the 100-meter sprint.

That trial run, as Goldstein describes it, was more like a try-out on a very public stage.

“At the Tim Duncan meet in Des Moines, [Coach Freeman] had me, Andy Hirakawa [’12] and Davis [Herman ’11], all entered in the 100 [meters] to fill out the last two sports, and everyone else scratched out of that heat, so it was just us three and I ended up getting first,” Goldstein said.

Though a young quartet, Phillips has high hopes for the rest of the season.

“I think we still have some things we could work on, but overall we’re close to being a good competitor come Conference,” Phillips said.

Also on the men’s side, Noah DeLong ’11 won the 800-meteres in a time of 1:59.56, Gavin Warnock leaped 20’7.25” to victory in the long jump and Jake Lindstrom vaulted 12 feet seven and one half inches in the pole vault.

DeLong recounted his victory.

“I think I came through the first lap in 57 [seconds]…on the way around I think was I pretty tired,” he said. “My arms were pretty dead. I’m not sure what would have happened if there was someone to push me more, if I would have been faster or not, but I pushed it pretty hard through the end.”

The women were led by Christine Ajinjeru ’14, who earned Midwest Conference Performer of the Week honors for her victory in the 400-meters with a time of 60.13 seconds and her role on the once-again school record-breaking 4×400-meter relay team of Elena Gartner ’14, Sarah Burnell ’14, Isabelle Miller ’13 and Ajinjeru, who took second with a time of 4:03.82.

Coincidentally, the relay team has found their formation less than ideal.

“There’s three of us that usually do the relay. There’s Isabelle, Sarah and [myself], so the entire outdoor season we’ve been trying to find a fourth person to start off the race and this time around the combination worked well,” Ajinjeru said.

Gartner, the fourth piece, tells the tale of formation as though it were quite serendipitous.

“It sort of happened as an accident. I hadn’t been on the relay to begin with, and I was just filling in for someone and the day that we did that we all had really good races and broke the record for the first time,” she said.

The women hope to give the MWC’s top relay team, Monmouth, a good challenge at the Conference Meet.

Also putting out an impressive day were Burnell, who won the 1500-meters (4:55.81) and took second in the 800 (2:23.48), Gartner, who placed third in the 800 with a time of (2:26.04), Leah Russell ’11, who took third in the 1500 in 5:04.89, Cassidy White ’14 who placed second in the 3000-meters (20:03.95) and Sachi Graber ’12, who pole vaulted to second in 9’-2 ¼” and was on the second place 4×100-meter relay team along with Emily Clennon ’14, Ajinjeru and Miller.

For the rest of the season, Goldstein is confident.

“I think that we’re progressing really well and I think we’re looking pretty good for Conference,” he said.

This Saturday the squad will compete at the Kip Janvrin Invite in Indianola, IA.

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