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ISSUE 119 VOL 12 PUBLISHED 3/3/2006

Men's indoor nears home stretch of season

By Marjorie Thirlby
Staff Writer

Friday, March 3, 2006

After two consecutive impressive performances by members of the St. Olaf men’s track and field team, and the team’s recent success at Saturday’s meet, the Oles remain eager to enter the upcoming MIAC championships.

On Feb. 11, senior superpower Sam Hauck completed the 5,000-meter run at Iowa State in 14:50.51. For his efforts, Hauck was named MIAC Track Athlete of the Week.

The following weekend, Tom Cruse ‘07 followed in Hauck’s footsteps by earning the same honor for running 1:54.81 in the 800-meter dash at the Tostrud Classic Feb. 18. Cruse’s time for the event became the best in the MIAC, and 15th among NCAA Division III runners for this season.

Inspired by Hauck and Cruse’s successes, the Oles continued to shine in the recent MIAC Qualifier, held last Saturday at St. Olaf. The team displayed its versatility with contributions from numerous performers in several events.

In the preliminaries for the 55-meter dash, co-captain Trey Williams ‘06 took fifth place with a qualifying time of 6.71 seconds, giving him leverage for his subsequent fourth place finish in the finals, running 6.69. In the 3,000-meter run, Tony Hoff ‘07 offered a stellar performance, taking second with a time of 8:45.07. David Green ‘09 trailed Hoff by roughly 15 seconds, earning sixth place with a time of 9:00.54.

In one of their top finishes, the Oles took first place in the 4 x 200 relay with a time of 1:31.79. Aaron Schloer ‘07, Williams, Latravis Henry ‘07 and Horace Gant ‘08 were only .5 seconds away from breaking the St. Olaf record. The four competitors hope to take first and set a new school record in the upcoming conference meet.

Besides impressive finishes on the track, the Oles also triumphed in field events. In the shot put, All-American and co-captain Pete Cathcart ‘08 took first, throwing 16.32 meters. Cathcart also finished fourth in the weight throw with a distance of 15.48 meters.

“I felt we had a good showing by a number of young guys and that we're

ready to compete this weekend at conference,” Cathcart said.

After reflecting on last weekend’s meet, the Oles are satisfied but still looking to improve.

“We had some really strong performances in the distance races, especially from Tony Hoff,” Jesse Horst ‘06 said. “We really need the younger distance guys to step up if we’re going to score like we want to in conference.”

Unfortunately, Jesse Horst ‘06, one of the Oles’ top middle distance runners, will be absent in the upcoming competition due to illness.

“It’s disappointing because I was placed highly in a few events,” said Horst.

Nevertheless, Horst remained optimistic in his team’s potential to do well in the conference meet.

“It’s going to be really tight between the top three teams, [St. John’s, St. Thomas, and St. Olaf] but it’s going to take a lot for us to pull off a big win,” Horst said. “We’ll have to have a lot of top performances, but it would be foolish to count us out.”

The Oles will enter the MIAC Championships this weekend, held at home on Friday and Saturday, at 3:00 p.m. and 11:00 a.m., respectively. The Oles look to set new records, outstrip the Johnnies and Tommies, and take home first place.

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