Author: Riley Kimball (Senior Writer)
The Occidental Track and Field team concluded its season at the SCIAC meet with the men finishing fourth and the women fifth. They competed well despite not having depth in the field events, specifically the throwing events. “It’s pretty much what we expected, place-wise,” said Sebi Devlin-Foltz (senior). “But across the board the meet was way faster than years past. The SCIAC as a whole stepped its game up.”
Facing this new level of competition, Occidental held its own. Jonathan Padron (sophomore) edged out the competition by just .02 seconds to take first place in the 100m dash, and in the men’s 800m, Cole Williams (first year) won by a full five seconds, crushing other schools’ opponents. Claire Larson (senior) finished in a close second in the women’s 800m, as did Colin Smith (first year) in the men’s 1500m and Juan German (senior) in the Hammer Throw. Lauren Johnson (senior) in the 100m hurdles, Dave Foley (senior) in the high jump and the men’s 4x400m relay team all earned spots on the podium.
The Tigers have mostly positive feelings about the season in spite of a less than ideal conclusion to the SCIAC meet. “Some people had some rough races, but everyone was really supportive, and it was a good time,” said Anna Dalton (senior).
The athletes with the top 18 times in each event around the country will be invited to compete at the NCAA National meet. Consequently, though the season is officially complete, athletes are still racing, throwing and jumping to improve their scores and earn a slot at Nationals. This Saturday night the Tigers will host an invitational for athletes hoping to improve further on their season performances.
For many, though, the athletic season is over. With a long, successful season under their belts, they will cheer their teammates on at the qualifier meet this weekend and at Nationals at the end of May. For the senior runners on the team, many of whom also run cross country, this marks the end of four years of continuous athletic participation. “It’s very weird to be done completely,” said Dalton. “I’m not sad, exactly; but we were all just so happy for each other there at the end, and it’s hard to leave the team.”
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