Men’s and Women’s Track hosts Norse Invitational

+Lauren+Berg+won+the+Women%E2%80%99s+3000+meter+steeplechase+with+a+time+of+12.22.14.+It+was+her+first+time+ever+competing+in+the+event.+%28Photo+courtesy+of+Nick+Greseth+and+Luther+College+Photo+Bureau%29

Lauren Berg won the Women’s 3000 meter steeplechase with a time of 12.22.14. It was her first time ever competing in the event. (Photo courtesy of Nick Greseth and Luther College Photo Bureau)

In their only home meet of the season, the Luther men’s and women’s track and field teams placed second with 120 points and fourth with 115.50 points, respectively, in the 2021 Norse Invitational. The University of Wisconsin-Stout won both the men’s and women’s competitions with scores of 284.50 and 172, respectively. This was the first home meet for Luther since a dual meet against Wartburg College in 2019.

For the Luther men, Lane Schwarz (‘23), Ian Kelly (‘23) and Regarieon Hicks (‘24) all posted first-place finishes. Schwarz won the 800 meters with a time of 2:19.17, Hicks won the triple jump with a distance of 47-0 ¼, and Kelly won the 3000 meter steeplechase with a time of 9:51.47. Kelly had only ran the race once before, but was excited to compete in the event.

“I was trying to be confident going into the race and really focus on my form going over all the barriers,” Kelly said. “I think I always push myself to the limits and run with a lot of heart, which makes me proud.”

Other notable performances for the Norse men included the 4×100 meter relay team of Zach Mohler (‘21), Matt Kriedermacher (‘22), Tinashe Chisora (‘24) and Brandon Deas (‘24), who defeated six other teams with a time of 42.51, the second-fastest all-time in Luther history. Kriedermacher also ran the 200 meters; his time of 22.35 ranks fifth all-time.

For the Luther women, three athletes and a relay team placed first in various events. Amelia Hornseth (‘21) won the 800 meters with a time of 2:19.17, Rose Sieve (‘22) won the 400 hurdles with a time of 1:05.80, and Lauren Berg (‘22) won the 3000 steeplechase with a time of 12.22.14. As for the relay, the team of Sieve, Kassandra Keller (‘23), Ana Goellner (‘24) and Mya Ploor (‘24) won the 4×400 meter relay with a time of 4:12.16.

Other top-10 finishes came from Rachel Luebbe (‘23), who placed second in the high jump, and Abby Faulk (‘22), who placed third in the pole vault. Luther Women’s Track and Field Head Coach Yarrow Pasche highlighted the performances of Sieve and Faulk for achieving new personal bests, as well as Berg for winning her race in her first-ever attempt at the event. Pasche only expects more high-quality performances from her team as the season concludes.

As we trim back the work-load heading into our championships in the coming weeks, I expect our performances to take off,” Pasche said. “It was fantastic to host a home meet and have an opportunity to make use of our great track and field venue.”

Both the men’s and women’s teams have four competitions left in their season. Many athletes and coaches, like Goellner and Pasche, are just thankful for the chance to compete.

“Despite [the COVID-19 pandemic], the season has gone far better than I expected,” Goellner said. “Especially towards the end of the year, the team has done a lot of fun things that have brought us closer together; also, having the opportunity to race during a global pandemic is pretty cool.”

After competing at the Norse Invitational, Luther traveled to Waverly, Iowa on May 6 for a dual meet with Wartburg College. The Men’s team lost 429-160, and the Women’s team lost 440 to 181. The next scheduled competition for both teams will be the American Rivers Conference Outdoor Championships, which will be held on May 13-15 at the University of Dubuque.

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