All the news from NAIA Mens and Womens Track.

LaVon Davis - Ames-GVU
©Doug Wells 2018

Record Breaking Day For Vikings at Conference

Kennedy King-Assumption-GVU ©Doug Wells 2018

Kennedy King-Assumption-GVU
©Doug Wells 2018

Grand View men’s and women’s indoor track and field had an extremely successful weekend at the Heart of America Championships this past weekend in Crete, NE. The women’s team finished third overall hips and the men took home the silver. This is the highest Grand View men’s track and field have finished since joining the Heart of America Athletic Conference.

Courtesy Viking Athletics, click here!  Feature photo:  LaVon Davis – Ames-GVU ©Doug Wells 2018


Both teams wrote history with 17 individual All-Conference Athletes, ten NAIA qualifying marks, six school records, six conference champions, four top ten marks in NAIA and three all-conference relays.

Grand View men finished first, third, fifth, six and seventh in the weight throw with James Plummer earning first place with a mark of 21.11 meters. LaVon Davis also won the weight throw for the women with a mark of 18.60 meters. In men’s shot put the Vikings went first, second, third and eighth. With Plummer leading with a mark of 16.05 meters followed by Tatman earning second with a new NAIA B standard mark of 15.10 meter and Jake Goeller placing third with a mark of 14.58 meters.

The Vikings men and women won the 60-meter hurdles naming two conference champions, Jordan Nathen who finished with a time of 8.30 and Amara Taylor with a time of 8.86. Dimetrea Hamilton placed second in the 60-meter hurdles following close behind Taylor with a time of 8.89. Brandon Young was named a conference champion in the 600-meter run with a time of 1:22.94 and placed third in the 800-meter run.

Other athletes to note…

Kennedy King placed third in the 600-meter run while Chantel Blair earned third place in triple jump with a personal best of 10.86-meters. In the men’s 400-meter dash Jacob Clouse finished third.

Up next … 

The Vikings are back on the road this Saturday for the Wartburg Inviational in Waverly, IA.

©Fighting Fees Athletics

Bees’ Pestka Record Setting Performance

Josh Pestka-N. Scott-SAU ©Fighting Bees Athletics 2018

Josh Pestka-N. Scott-SAU
©Fighting Bees Athletics 2018

Olivet Nazarene University’s Bryce Vollrath (Peoria, Ill.) claimed his second straight Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference Men’s Field Athlete of the Week award, while St. Ambrose University’s Josh Pestka (Davenport, Iowa) used a record-setting performance to gain his first CCAC Men’s Track Athlete of the Week honor, it was announced by the league office on Thursday morning.

Courtesy Fighting Bees Athletics, click here!  Feature photo: ©Fighting Fees Athletics 2018 


Pestka, a junior, broke a Fighting Bee record that had stood for ten years when he ran a 2:29.22 in the 1,000 meter run. That eclipsed the previous mark by more than three seconds and helped him capture the race at the St. Ambrose Invitational on Saturday. It also earned him an “A” standard mark and the fourth-best time in the NAIA this year. A total of 15 individuals made up the race field.

Pestka also anchored the Bees’ distance medley relay team, which also placed first out of four teams with a time of 10:45.94. That effort ranks No. 10 in the NAIA.

Peter Smith-N. Polk-Northwestern-IA
©Red Raider Athletics

Red Raiders Hit National Auto Qualifier in NAIA Marathon

Tanner Goetsch-Spirit Lake-Northwestern-IA ©Red Raider Athletics

Tanner Goetsch-Spirit Lake-Northwestern-IA
©Red Raider Athletics

Two Northwestern College runners, Peter Smith

and Tanner Goetsch, met the auto mark and qualified for the NAIA Outdoor Track and Field Championships in the marathon.

Courtesy Red Raider Athletics, click here! Feature photo: Peter Smith-N. Polk-Northwestern©Red Raider Athletics


Goetsch, Smith and Jeffrey Jeltema all competed at the Midland Warriors Half-Marathon on Saturday, Dec. 2 in Fremont, Neb. Smith won the 13.1 mile race with a school record time of 1:10.37, meeting the NAIA’s automatic qualifying standard. The senior broke the old record, set by Ryan Bauermeister last year, by 1:16. Goetsch also met the auto mark and bettered the old record, placing third with a time of 1:11.50. Jeltema crossed the finish line in 26th place with

Peter Smith-N. Polk-Northwestern-IA ©Red Raider Athletics

Peter Smith-N. Polk-Northwestern-IA
©Red Raider Athletics

a time of 1:20.18, nearly 10 minutes faster than his time in 2016.

Northwestern Men Cross Country 2017
©Red Raider Athletics

Iowans Represent at GPAC Championships

Michelle Mumm-Neola-Morningside ©Kevin Pottebaum

Michelle Mumm-Neola-Morningside
©Kevin Pottebaum

The Sioux City Journal Published an article on the GPAC Cross Country Championships, below is an excerpt from that article.  To read the full article and to see full results, click here! 

Feature photo: Northwestern Men Cross Country 2017 ©Red Raider Athletics

Northwestern and Dordt won team titles Saturday while individual firsts came from both races in the Great Plains Athletic Conference cross country championships.

The Red Raider men, NAIA’s 14th-ranked team, placed four runners in the top 11 to claim their second straight league title by totaling 38 points.

The Defender women claimed the league title for the fifth time in the last six seasons after finishing second to Morningside last fall. Dordt, ranked 11th, had four runners finish in the top 13 to total 45 points.

 Morningside senior Michelle Mumm became the first female from her school to win a GPAC individual race by finishing the 5,000-meter course in 17:47.34. Mumm edged Dordt’s Audrey Brooks who ran 17:52.12.

Bosch, the Northwestern senior, finished fourth in 18:25.87 while Hastings’ Janelle Bethea was third in 18:11.81.

Dakota Wesleyan senior Jeremiah Panec became the first male from his school to win a GPAC individual race when he crossed in 24:56.09 over 8,000-meters. Northwestern senior Tanner Goetsch led the league champs with a runner-up 24:58.50.

Northwestern men and Dordt women earn automatic qualifying berths into the NAIA National Championships on November 18 at Fort Vancouver, Wash.

The Red Raider women finished second in the team race while ranked NAIA teams Hastings (#24) and Morningside (#16), were second and third, respectively.

Mt Mercy Men's Cross Country 2017
©Mustangs Athletics

Mustangs National Qualifiers

Mt Mercy Women's Cross Country 2017 ©Mustangs Athletics

Mt Mercy Women’s Cross Country 2017
©Mustangs Athletics

The Mount Mercy men earned an automatic berth in the NAIA national meet with a runner-up finish at Saturday’s Heart of America Athletic Conference Cross Country Championships hosted by Baker (Kan.) at Baldwin City Golf Course. The Mustang women, led by national qualifiers Alexa Zamora and Molly Pruett, finished third.

Courtesy Mustangs Athletics, click here! Feature photo: Mt Mercy Men’s Cross Country 2017 ©Mustangs Athletics

James Lindstrom (26:29) and Colton Forster (26:39) finished sixth and ninth in the 8K, respectively, to lead the Mount Mercy men’s squad. Both were named to the Heart of America all-conference team. Rounding out the top seven for the Mustangs were Cameron Steffens (23rd/27:31), Aaron Golding (24th/27:34), Michael Marshall (32nd/27:57), Jacob Blackmon (37th/28:14), and Chase Kress (82nd/31:10).

“Our men’s team fed off the women’s performance and took care of business,” said Head Coach Tad Hulst. “They fought for each other the whole race and met their goal of getting to nationals as a group.”

Missouri Valley had five individuals in the top nine while cruising to the team championship with 22 points. The Vikings and Mustangs (94 pts.) earned the Heart’s automatic berths in the NAIA Cross Country National Championships on Nov. 18 in Fort Vancouver, Wash. The rest of the top five on Saturday included Benedictine (Kan.) (105 pts.), Baker (106 pts.) and Central Methodist (Mo.) (110 pts.).

Zamora and Pruett finished back-to-back in the 5K to make the women’s all-conference team. Both are headed back to the national meet, Pruett for the fourth time. Zamora crossed the finish line eighth in 19:39, while Pruett was ninth in 19:40. Mount Mercy’s top seven also included McKenna Johnson (19th/20:03), Vanessa Cortes (21st/20:09), Kathryn Vander Poel (27th/20:31), Taylor Skala (35th/20:49), and Jaelynn Folkers (38th/20:55).

“Our women’s team stepped up big-time today,” Hulst said. “By far, they ran their best race of the season at the perfect time as a squad.”

With four runners in the top seven, MidAmerica Nazarene easily claimed the women’s team title with 29 points. The Pioneers were followed by Missouri Valley (68 pts.), which earned the league’s second automatic spot in the national championships. Mount Mercy (84 pts.), Benedictine (Kan.) (110 pts.), and Baker (139 pts.) rounded out the top five.

Men’s All-Conference Team:
Paulino Sanchez (Missouri Valley), Derek Wilson (Missouri Valley), Shane Burns (Evangel), Victor Reveles (Missouri Valley), Greg Flores (Baker), James Lindstrom (Mount Mercy), Demarkous Nunnally (Missouri Valley), Jose Ruiz (Missouri Valley), Colton Forster (Mount Mercy), Liam Barnsby (Baker).

Men’s Honorable Mention:
Carlos Guzman (MidAmerica Nazarene), Dakota Myers (MidAmerica Nazarene), Joseph Linder (Baker), Austin Johnson (Missouri Valley), Joseph Barnes (Benedictine).

Women’s All-Conference Team:
Bethany Brown (MidAmerica Nazarene), Erin Krohn (MidAmerica Nazarene), Katherine Dillard (Benedictine), Kaylee Shanley (MidAmerica Nazarene), Lizeth Luciano (Missouri Valley), Melanie Cozzi (Benedictine), Rachel White (MidAmerica Nazarene), Alexa Zamora (Mount Mercy), Molly Pruett (Mount Mercy), Kirari Furumoto (Missouri Valley).

Women’s Honorable Mention:
Kami Tabor (Graceland), Lisa Sauter (Central Methodist), Lizbeth Luciano (Missouri Valley), Leslie Perona (Evangel), Kendra Alsup (MidAmerica Nazarene).

Grand View Men's Cross Country Team 2017
©Doug Wells 2017

Vikings Compete in Heart of America Conference Meet

Michaela Barretta-Indianola-Grand View Doug Wells 2017

Michaela Barretta-Indianola-Grand View
Doug Wells 2017

The Grand View men’s and women’s cross country teams traveled to Baldwin City, Kansas to compete in the Heart of America Cross Country Championship on Saturday, November 4. The event was hosted by Baker University and held at Baldwin City Golf Course.

Courtesy Vikings Athletics, click here! Feature photo: Grand View Men’s Cross Country Team 2017 ©Doug Wells 2017

The women’s team finished in 11th place with 302 team points. Top three finishers in the 5k race were senior Michelle Thayer (Runnells, Iowa), sophomore Michaela Barretta (Indianola, Iowa), and freshman Mackenzie Christensen (Logan, Iowa). Thayer led the Vikings and finished 40th with a time of 21:06. Barretta came in 51st at 21:44, and Christensen crossed in 22:27 for 59th place.

In the men’s 8k race Grand View came in 9th place with 267 team points. Junior Alex Arechavaleta (Altoona, Iowa) finished in 39th place with a time of 28:23 while freshman Ben Huftalin (Osage, Iowa) crossed in 46th at 29:03. Senior Brandon Young (Des Moines, Iowa) rounded out the top 3 finishers for the Vikings with a 54th place finish in 29:31.

See full results of both races at the following link, click here!


St Ambrose Women XC
©Fighting Bees Athletics-2017

Iowans Boast Bees at Semiole Valley Stampede

St Ambrose Women XC ©Fighting Bees Athletics-2017

St Ambrose Women XC
©Fighting Bees Athletics-2017

Running against some of the best competition in the NAIA, Ashley Plumb raced to a top 10 finish in 18:55, breaking the school record for fastest 5k time.

Courtesy Bees Athletics, click here! Feature photo: St Ambrose Women XC ©Fighting Bees Athletics-2017

Plumb was two seconds faster than Becca Wilder’s previous school record and was 40 seconds faster than her previous lifetime best.

The performance helped pace the Bees to a 7th place finish in the 28-team field at the NAIA Semiole Valley Stampede, and was one of three personal bests by SAU runners.

Bees No. 2 runner Abby Sears ran to a personal best of 19:47 with Chloe Gunn (20:01), Keeley Knobloch (20:08) and Megan Grady (20:10) right behind her. For Grady, a freshman, her time was also a personal best.

Down the line the Bees had a pair of seniors nearly set lifetime bests as Ann Froeschle and Ashlyn Rulis were each within four seconds of running the fastest race of their life.

Jenny Dickes (20:38) and Karyn Paisley (20:41) rounded out the Bees top 7 which finished with a season’s best team time of 99:02.

“It was a very good team race and we learned a lot about ourselves today,” SAU head coach Dan Zeimet said. “We’re ready for the conference meet and whatever is thrown at us. These women have run in a lot of big races and we’re looking forward to another one at the conference championship.”

The Bees will head to Elgin, Ill. on Nov. 4 to tackle the course at Wing Park Golf Course and look to win their first Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference Championship. The top two teams at the conference meet will qualify for the NAIA XC National Championships outside of Portland, Ore. on Nov. 21.

SAU results
9, Ashley Plumb — 18:55 (personal best, school record)
34, Abby Sears — 19:47 (personal best)
52, Chloe Gunn — 20:01
62, Keeley Knobloch — 20:08
64, Megan Grady — 20:10 (personal best)
91, Jenny Dickes — 20:38
97, Karyn Paisley — 20:41
Mallory Rettenmeier — 20:45 (season best)
Ann Froeschle — 20:48 (season best)
Abby Hammer — 20:57 (season best)
Ashlyn Rulis — 21:54 (season best)
Sarah Adams — 22:01
Shelby Carlson — 23:47

Graceland Men XC
©Yellowjackets Athletics-2016

Yellowjackets Perform Well at BV

Graceland University traveled to the Buena Vista Cross Country Invite Saturday and put on quite the performance in both the men’s 8,000m race and the women’s 6,000m race.

Courtesy Yellowjackets Athletics, click here! Feature photo: Graceland Men XC ©Yellowjackets Athletics-2016
Graceland Women XC ©Yellowjackets Athletics

Graceland Women XC
©Yellowjackets Athletics-2016

The men’s team finished first as a team taking the top five positions in the race.  Jordan Adamsran a quick 30:28.84 on Buena Vista’s course.  However Jordan’s teammates were close on his heels.  Zacary Stetzel finish in the second position running a 30:46.12, Hector Salas came in third with a course time of 31:15.6.  Lucky Lovan continued next in line of the Graceland pack finishing in the fourth spot boasting a time of 31:23.4, and Kyrron Davis landed in fifth with a time of 31:28.35.  The time difference between the group was just under one minute.

It didn’t stop with those five, Graceland’s Jeremiah Reynolds ran the course in 32:43.65 which earned him the seventh spot, as well as Sergio Cardenas ran a 37:55.59 finishing 15th.  Austyn Gregory and Erren Ewing also represented Graceland University‘s program in the race.

At the helm on the women’s side, Kami Tabor continues to keep in her stride notching another first place finish on her belt for the 2017 season.  Tabor finished the BVU course for the 6,000m race with a time of 25:01.18, unfortunately as a team enough of runners didn’t finish the course and so they didn’t place as a team. Tabor’s time was a personal record by 40 seconds.

The rest of Graceland’s squad ran a strong race, Kalee Dowell ran a 25:49.68 for the race earning her the third place finish, and Marina Flores crossed the finished line in the fifth place with a time of 27:39.74.  Taylor Farnsworth landed in the 12th position when she crossed the finish with a time of 31:08.76.  Valerya Galindo and Taylor Leonard also ran the course for Graceland’s women’s squad. Dowell (one minute and 30 second), Flores (three minutes) and Taylor Farnsworth (three minutes) set personal records on the course as well.

The Cross Country teams will be back on the course on October 7 at the BCU Invitation hosted by Briar Cliff University.

St Ambrose Women XC
©Fighting Bees Athletics-2017

Fighting Bees Handle the Heat at Auggie

Karyn Paisley-St. Ambrose  ©Fighting Bees Athletics-2017

Karyn Paisley-St. Ambrose
©Fighting Bees Athletics-2017

The St. Ambrose women’s cross country team ran one of their best races in school history. Times won’t tell the story though, becuase on a day when heat indexes went above 100 degrees, the Bees ran a smart, tough race to finish 5th at the Brissman-Lundeen Invite. The two-race meet that featured 34 total teams saw the Bees put five women inside the top 40 in the premier race.

Courtesy Fighting Bees Athletics, click here! Feature photo: St Ambrose Women XC-2017 ©Fighting Bees Athletics

Ashley Plumb led the way with an 8th-place finish in the 244-person race, nearly running a personal best time of 19:37. She was just two seconds away from her lifetime best time.

It wasn’t just Plumb, though. Freshman Meg Grady ran a 30-second personal best and finished as the Bees No. 5 runner to finish off a pack that rolled in less than a minute apart. Grady finished in 20:32, Keeley Knobloch was second for the Bees, and 18th overall, in 20:02. Chloe Gunn and Jenny Dickes finished side-by-side for the third time this year, in 32nd (20:22) and 33rd place (20:26) respectively.

Another newcomer, junior Abby Sears was the Bees No. 6 runner with a personal best of 20:56 and senior Abby Hammerrounded out the Bees seven scorers.

The rest of the team either equaled or beat their previous season bests.

“This was a very good race for us,” SAU head coach Dan Zeimet said. “We were mentally prepared for the heat today, anticipated what it would feel like and ran a great race.”

The Bees will continue to train with sights now set on the Fighting Bee Invite at Crow Creek Park in Bettendorf on October 7.

SAU results
8, Ashley Plumb – 19:37
18, Keeley Knobloch – 20:02
32, Chloe Gunn – 20:20
33, Jenny Dickes – 20:22
37, Megan Grady – 20:32 (personal best)
57, Abby Sears – 20:56 (personal best)
64, Abby Hammer – 21:06 (season best)
66, Ann Froeschle – 21:09 (season best)
69, Mallory Rettenmeier – 21:11 (season best)
85, Sarah Adams – 21:29 (season best)
115, Amy Brouch – 22:03
124, Ashlyn Rulis – 22:16 (season best)
132, Sara Stockdale – 22:24 (season best)
175, Shelby Carlson – 23:45 (season best)
217, Carrington Curphy – 25:24 (personal best)
233 ,Kathryn Gray – 27:13

Tiffany Shepherd-Corning-Morningside
©Mike Brynes

All American Honors to Iowans of Morningside

Reece Jackson-Marcus-Morningside ©Mike Brynes

Reece Jackson-Marcus-Morningside
©Mike Brynes

Morningside College runners earned NAIA All-America honors in the men’s and women’s 3200-meter relays with place winning efforts on Friday at the NAIA Outdoor Track & Field National Championships in Gulf Shores, Ala.

Courtesy Mustangs Athletics, click here! Feature photo: Tiffany Shepherd-Corning-Morningside ©Mike Brynes

The Mustangs earned All-America honors in the men’s 3200-meter relay for the fourth time in the last five years.

Morningside finished fourth in the women’s 3200-meter relay, where Payton Boer, a sophomore from Sioux Center, Iowa; Cassie Warner, a sophomore from Council Bluffs, Iowa; Michelle Mumm, a junior from Neola, Iowa; and Tiffany Shepherd, a senior from Corning, Iowa, combined for a time of 9:08.81. The Mustangs moved up three spots after they had qualified for the finals with the seventh fastest time of 9:09.94 in Thursday’s prelims. Morningside finished with a margin of almost four seconds over defending NAIA National Champion Biola University, which finished fifth in 9:12.67.

Aquinas University won the national championship in the event with a time of 8:53.57, followed by the University of British Columbia in 8:54.31 and Wayland Baptist University in 8:56.71. Wayland Baptist, featuring 800-meter indoor All-Americans Tiffany Cano and Elizabeth Williams, was the NAIA regular season national leader and ran the fastest qualifying time of 9:05.03 in the prelims.

The Mustangs finished eighth in the men’s 3200-meter relay with a time of 7:47.16 from the quartet of Kyle Hiser, a senior from Shenandoah, Iowa; Alec DeVries, a junior from Merrill, Iowa; Drew Schiltz, a senior from Hinton, Iowa; and Jacob Green, a junior from Sioux Falls, S.D. The Mustangs had qualified for the final with the sixth fastest time of 7:37.0 in Thursday’s prelims.

Morningside’s same four runners earned NAIA All-America honors earlier this year with a fifth place finish in the 3200-meter relay at the NAIA Indoor Track & Field National Championships.

British Columbia won the national championship in the men’s 3200-meter relay with a time of 7:33.45. Regular season national leader Indiana Tech finished second in 7:34.08 and Siena Heights University, which led all schools with a time of 7:34.04 in the prelims, finished third in 7:34.87. Indiana Tech and Siena Heights also finished second and third in the 3200-meter relay at this year’s NAIA Indoor National Championships.

Morningside competed in Friday evening’s prelims of the women’s 1600-meter relay, where the Mustangs’ quartet of Eleka Joseph, a junior from Saint John’s, Antigua; Mumm, Payton Boer, a sophomore from Sioux Center, Iowa; and Rose Pelelo-Ray, a sophomore from Merrill, Iowa, finished 14th with a time of 3:54.91.

Aside from her participation in Friday’s relay events, Mumm also competed in the women’s 800-meter prelims, where she finished 18th with a time of 2:16.76.

Reece Jackson, a sophomore from Marcus, Iowa, competed in the men’s 110-meter high hurdles prelims and finished 14th with a time of 14.80 seconds.

Kati Kneifl, a sophomore from Sheldon, Iowa, finished 13th in Thursday’s women’s javelin competition. Kneifl had a distance of 130-1/2 to finish less than four inches out of 11th place behind Shana Cosby (130-4) of the University of Great Falls and Carroll College’s Crystal Schmidt (130-2).

Sean Skillern, a senior from Shenandoah, Iowa, finished 16th in Saturday’s men’s 3000-meter steeplechase with a time of 10:07.10.

The Mustangs competed in the men’s 400-meter relay, but did not advance past Thursday’s prelims. Morningside’s sprint quartet of Perman Wilson, a junior from Lakeland, Fla.; Will Griffin, a junior from Cedar Rapids, Iowa; Klayton Nordeen, a freshman from Alliance, Neb.; and Logan Roberts, a freshman from Shenandoah, Iowa, finished 16th in the prelims with a time of 41.88 seconds.