Will Syrus per­forms the long jump during the Wide Track Classic on Feb­ruary 1. (Todd Lan­caster | Courtesy)

As the events con­cluded Sat­urday in the Biermann Ath­letic Center, one of the most exciting weeks of the season began: cham­pi­onship week. The Hillsdale College Chargers will enter next week’s G‑MAC Indoor Cham­pi­onship fresh off a strong finish at last weekend’s Hillsdale Tune-Up. The Chargers fin­ished second with 75 points behind Adrian College, who took the top spot with 126 points.

Hillsdale’s only victory of the weekend came in the high jump as freshman Will Syrus jumped 6.32 meters on his final attempt to take first. Syrus con­tinues to show improvement after bat­tling through injury last fall, and has the ath­leticism to make a tan­gible impact as the Chargers con­tinue to search for depth in the field events.

Sophomore Morgan Mor­rison turned in an excellent time in the mile run, fin­ishing the race in 4:26.05. After a slow start, Mor­rison ran the last three laps faster than the rest of the field to finish second.

If Hillsdale hopes to surpass last year’s second place per­for­mance at the G‑MAC Indoor Track and Field Cham­pi­onship, the Chargers will need an excellent per­for­mance from junior Joey Humes. At last year’s meet, an event which Hillsdale hosted, Humes won Track Athlete of the Meet. This year, Humes has the fastest times in the G‑MAC this year in the mile and 3000 meter runs, and ranks second in the 5000 meter run.

In the field, freshman pole vaulter Ben Raffin seems poised to make a leap to the top of the con­ference. Raffin has the third best mark in the G‑MAC this season, but his knack for con­sistent improvement this season makes him a threat to chal­lenge in the pole vault and win valuable points for Hillsdale.

Another key piece for the Chargers is sophomore Ryan Thomsen. Thomsen had a breakout year in the field, com­peting well in a variety of events. Hillsdale will look for a strong per­for­mance from Thomsen in the hep­tathlon — one of the sports greatest tests of overall ath­leticism — as he enters this weekend with the second best score in the event among G‑MAC com­pe­tition.

This year, the con­ference cham­pi­onship meet is held at the Uni­versity of Findlay, the defending champion in the G‑MAC. As the Chargers look to carry home the title, they will face stiff com­pe­tition up and down the con­ference — espe­cially from Findlay and G‑MAC new­comer Tiffin Uni­versity. Events begin on Friday in Findlay’s Malcolm Ath­letic Center at 10 a.m., and will con­clude Sat­urday evening.