BELOIT, Wis. - The RU men's and women's track & field teams participated in the Beloit Relays this past Friday and Saturday. This was Rockford's final tune-up prior to next week's NACC Outdoor Championships. The Regents performed very well despite the rough weather conditions finishing in ninth and tenth place.
The top individual performer of the day was senior Justin Christiansen (Rockford, Ill.) who turned in a trio of top five finishes. Christiansen placed second in the javelin with a throw of 35.75 meters, fourth in the high jump with a height of 1.78 meters and fifth in the 110 meter hurdles with a time of 19.08 seconds.
Chris Wilson-Poston (Carlock, Ill.) was the only other Regent to record multiple top five finishes at the meet. Wilson-Poston placed fifth in the 100 meter dash with a personal best time of 11.62 seconds and fifth in the 200 meter race crossing the finish line in 23.38 seconds.
Sophomore Jared Johnson (Miami, Fla.) was once again the top performer in the throwing events for Rockford. Johnson set a new personal best in the shot put with a throw of 11.63 meters to finish in eighth place. He also participated in the hammer throw where he finished 17th with a distance of 33.42 meters.
Nick Thomas (Winslow, Ariz.) and Jonathan Ponce Cuiriz (Kewanee, Ill.) both also set personal bests over the weekend. Thomas set a personal best in the shot put with a throw of 10.49 meters to finish in 13th place and also had season-best time in 110 meter hurdles when he crossed the finish line in 20.19 seconds to place eighth. Ponce Cuiriz set a new personal best in the hammer throw with a distance of 31.04 meters to finish in 21st place.
Christian Devant (Winnebago, Ill.) and Nathan Alldritt (Winnebago, Ill.) were the final two RU male athletes to tally a top five individual finish. Devant placed third in the 800 meter race with a season-best time of 2:03.64, while Alldritt took eighth place in the high jump with a height of 1.53 meters.
Rockford's lone relay event over the weekend came in the men's 4x800 meter. The team of Bailey Beard (Rockford, Ill.), John Finley (Rockford, Ill.), Joe Werkheiser (Lena, Ill.) and Nick Noel (Belvidere, Ill.) took fifth in the event with a time of 8:52.52.
Freshman Kayla Barthels (Fort Worth, Tex.) and junior Jamie Buechner (Island Lake, Ill.) led the RU women's team by recording one fifth and one sixth place finish each. Barthels placed fifth in the long jump with a personal best leap of 4.92 meters and sixth in the triple jump with a personal best distance of 9.97 meters. Buechner finished fifth in the 200 meter event crossing the finish line in 27.54 seconds and sixth in the 100 meter dash with a time of 13.47 seconds.
Lexie Collins (Earlville, Ill.) and Tracy Wang (Lianyungang, China) each ran in one event. Collins took part in the 200 meter race, placing 10th with a time of 29.40 seconds. Wang ran in the 800 meter race where she finished 16th with a time of 3:05.61.
Freshmen Maddy Pearson (Peru, Ill.) and Katrina Kopfhamer (Portage, Wis.) led the way for Rockford in the throwing events. Pearson took 15th in the hammer throw with a distance of 31.26 meters and 21st in the shot put with a throw of 8.69 meters. Kopfhamer set a new personal best in the hammer throw with a distance of 30.46 meters and also took 25th in the shot put with a distance of 7.51 meters.
The Rockford University track and field teams return to competition next weekend at the NACC Outdoor Championships.