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March 29, 2009

2009 Season - Augustana men's track & field team dominates competition to win Viking Olympics

ROCK ISLAND, Ill. – The Augustana men’s track & field team hosted the Viking Olympics on Monday, March 29 at the Paul V. Olsen Track in Rock Island, Illinois and won the team championship with 402 points.  The Blue & Gold won 10 events to easily outdistance St. Ambrose, who was second with 171 points.  Lincoln (144), Dubuque (68), Faith Baptist Bible College (19), Clarke (14), and Iowa Wesleyan (6) rounded out the field.

Senior Ted McMillan (Erie HS, Cordova, Ill.) and freshman Greg Davis (Carlinville HS, Carlinville, Ill.) each won two individual events to lead the team.  McMillan earned titles in the 800 run (1:58.21) and the high jump (6’ 4”) while Davis raced past the competition in the 110 hurdles (:15.67) and the 400 hurdles (:56.22).  Sophomore Matt Somers (Naperville Central HS, Naperville, Ill.), freshman Billy TenBusch (Prairie Ridge HS, Cary, Ill.), freshman Phil Christensen (Kaneland HS, Maple Park, Ill.), and junior Darin Decker (Moline HS, Moline, Ill.) also won individual crowns.  Somers cruised home in :50.04 to win the 400, TenBusch easily won the 5000 in 15:21.78, Christensen threw the discus 150’ 9”, and Decker tossed the hammer throw 146’ 7”. 

Sophomore James Wood (St. Charles North HS, St. Charles, Ill.), Somers, Davis, and senior Evan Holschbach (Princeton HS, Princeton, Ill.) also won the 1600 relay with a time of 3:21.55.  Junior Dan Bailey (Deerfield HS, Deerfield, Ill.), senior Logan Beausoleil (Warren Township HS, Gurnee, Ill.), freshman Nick Danzy (Naperville Central HS, Naperville, Ill.), and senior Zach Cupples (Marquette HS, Ottawa, Ill.) grabbed the top spot in the 3200 relay with a clocking of  8:17.63.

The sprinters added points with a runner-up finish from Holschbach in the 200 (:22.39) and a third place finish from junior Max Petersen (Mundelein HS, Mundelein, Ill.) in the 100 (:11.04).  Wood placed sixth in the 200 with a time of :22.88.  Junior Jason Styzinski (Lincoln Way Central HS, New Lenox, Ill.) was eighth in the 100 (:11.36) and senior Maciek Wojtas (West Leyden HS, Franklin Park, Ill.) took eighth in the 200 (:23.64).

The middle distance and distance runners dominated the competition in the 800, 1500, and 5000 events, racking up a lot of points in all three events.  Sophomore Greg Weigand (Wheaton Warrenville South HS, Wheaton, Ill.), sophomore Jason Langslet (Mundelein HS, Mundelein, Ill.), sophomore Jarrett Kessel (Amboy HS, Sublette, Ill.), senior Jason Perine (Plainfield South HS, Plainfield, Ill.), and junior Zach Riley (Winnebago HS, Winnebago, Ill.) all scored in the 800, finishing second, third, fifth, seventh, and ninth.  Weigand hit the finish in 1:58.76, followed by Langslet (1:59.61), Kessel (2:03.34), Perine (2:05.73), and Riley (2:06.60).  Junior Brian Hart (University City HS, St. Louis, Mo.), Bailey, freshman Mike Tisza (Hersey HS, Prospect Heights, Ill.), sophomore Brad Keating (Cary Grove HS, Cary, Ill.), sophomore Sean Carmody (Winnebago HS, Rockford, Ill.), and Cupples swept the second through seventh spots in the 1500 and Beausoleil took ninth in the race.  Hart finished with a time of 4:04.22, followed by Bailey (4:04.76), Tisza (4:06.42), Keating (4:07.16), Carmody (4:08.06), Cupples (4:08.16), and Beausoleil (4:09.36).  Junior Tom Reis (Iowa City Regina HS, Iowa City, Iowa), freshman Brandon Gittleman (Naperville Central HS, Naperville, Ill.), and sophomore Eric Erspamer (Bartlett HS, Bartlett, Ill.) were second, third, and fourth in the 5000 with times of 15:45.56, 16:30.28, and 17:28.82 respectively.

Freshman Marty King (Oswego HS, Oswego, Ill.) was second in the 110 hurdles (:15.96) with sophomore Brendan Bradley (Mundelein HS, Mundelein, Ill.) placing third (:16.30).  Senior Mike Pettis (Davenport Assumption HS, Davenport, Iowa) was fifth (:16.38) and freshman Andrew Sixta (Valley HS, West Des Moines, Iowa) took sixth (:16.46).  King was also runner-up in the 400 hurdles (:57.38).  Junior Pat Fritsch (Fenton HS, Bensenville, Ill.) placed second in the 3000 steeplechase (10:25.50) and sophomore Lucas Westblade (Will Carleton Academy, Hillsdale, Mich.) finished third (10:52.50).  Petersen, Wood, Holschbach, and senior Kyle Ekberg (Rockford Christian HS, Rockford, Ill.) grabbed the runner-up spot in the 400 relay with a clocking of :42.33.

The Vikings also accumulated points from several competitors in the field events.    Freshman Markbyran Baron (Plainfield Central HS, Lockport, Ill.) was second in the high jump with a leap of 6’ 2”.  Junior Nathan Maass (Naperville Central HS, Naperville, Ill.) earned a second place showing in the triple jump (44’ 4”).  Senior Alex Hartz (Princeton HS, Princeton, Ill.) finished eighth in the long jump (18’ 1”) and freshman Bryn Sabadosa (Richards HS, Oak Lawn, Ill.) took ninth in the event (17’ 9 ½”).  The deepest event for Augustana was the pole vault where the Vikings swept the second through eighth place positions.  Freshman A.J. Nice (Christian Life HS, Caledonia, Ill.) led the way with a vault of 13’ 7 ¼”.  He was followed by sophomore Alex Stake (Williamsville HS, Sherman, Ill.) and sophomore Eric Chalus (Rochelle HS, Rochelle, Ill.), who also had vaults of 13’ 7 ¼”.  Sophomore Alex Mikos (Fenton HS, Wood Dale, Ill.), sophomore Ryan Biesterfield (York HS, Elmhurst, Ill.), and senior Jeremy Shaw (Vernon Hills HS, Vernon Hills, Ill.) were fifth, sixth, and seventh, all with vaults of 13’ 1 ½”.  Freshman Jimmy Zars (York HS, Elmhurst, Ill.) placed eighth with a vault of 12’ 1 ½”.

Freshman Brian Benning (Winnebago HS, Winnebago, Ill.), Decker, sophomore Mark Constantine (Waubonsie Valley HS, Naperville, Ill.), and Christensen were second through fifth in the shot put.  Benning finished second, just a ½ inch behind the winner with a throw of 44’ 11”.  Decker was third with a toss of 43’ 4 ¼”, Constantine took fourth (43’ 2 ¼”), and Christensen finished fifth (42’ 8 ¾”).  Sophomore Pat Hoefle (Lena-Winslow HS, Lena, Ill.) was the runner-up in the discus (150’ 4”) with Decker placing third (143’ 1”).  Freshman Adam Myers (Dixon HS, Dixon, Ill.) and senior Craig Riley (Waubonsie Valley HS, Aurora, Ill.) finished sixth and seventh in the event with tosses of 119’ 7” and 112’ 10” respectively.  Benning added a third place showing in the hammer throw (133’ 2”) and Riley finished fourth (133’ 0”).  Junior Jeff Lackaff (Downers Grove North HS, Downers Grove, Ill.) was the runner-up in the javelin (174’ 4”), Maass took fourth (150’ 10”), and senior Ryan Kelley (Wheaton North HS, Wheaton, Ill.) placed seventh (139’ 0”).

Augustana’s next meet will be Saturday, April 4 at the Wartburg Select Invitational in Waverly, Iowa.

Story written by Assistant Sports Information Director Adam Strand