Sophomore Calli Townsend hurdles during Hills­dale’s 2019 Wide Track Classic. (Todd Lan­caster | Courtesy)

The Hillsdale College women’s track team had its first home meet of the indoor season. It was full of energy which led to success. 

“It’s always nice to compete at home,” head coach Andrew Towne said. “The kids responded well to it. They had friends from soror­ities and class watching them compete and there was more energy.” 

In the field, sophomore Alexie began the strong day of com­pe­tition with a first place finish in the high jump, clearing a season-best of 1.63 meters. 

Coming off of a stress injury in her foot, senior Kathryn Bas­sette com­peted well vaulting 3.29 meters for a sixth place finish.

“The height was pretty average, but the big improvement was the process. After the break, it’s hard for me to find my rhythm,” Bas­sette said. “This last week I felt so much better. My run was really fluent from my full approach on a bigger pole and it was a mental con­fi­dence booster.”

In long jump, freshman Emily Gerdin lead her team with a third place finish jumping 5.16 meters. She was fol­lowed by Carlin Mac­Donald-Gannon who jumped 5.08 meters to claim fifth place. Senior Danielle Jones ended eighth jumping 4.9 meters. Mac­donald-Gannon placed second in the triple jump as well with a jump of 10.26 meters. 

Con­tinuing her dom­i­nance in her events, sophomore Nikita Maines threw for third place in shot put (13.56 meters). Maines was named the G‑MAC Women’s Field Athlete of the Week for her per­for­mance. Michaela Burkhauser ended fourth throwing 13.52 meters. Freshman Katie Weldy threw 12.04 meters for sixth place. 

In the weight throw, Maines earned her title with a second place finish and a throw of 17.32 meters. Burkhauser and Weldy placed fifth and eighth in the event, respec­tively. 

The team per­formed well on its home track. Freshman Allison Nimtz won the 60 meter dash with a time of 8.12 seconds. Alanna O’Leary won the 200 meter dash with a time of 26.34 seconds. On her heels was teammate Zalonya Eby who ran 26.82 seconds. Nimtz came in third in this event running it in 27.58 seconds. 

Freshman Dakota Stamm also com­peted for first place in the 400 meter dash. She won with a time of 58.48 seconds. 

Kaitlyn Rust ran the 800 meter race in 2:23.71 which was good for the victory. Her teammate, sophomore Amber Mango, took second place with a time of 2:25.22. 

The Chargers dom­i­nated the 3000 meter run, placing girls in the top four spots. Junior Lauren Peterson lead her pack with a win and a time of 11:02.12. Senior Addison Rauch came in behind her with a time of 11:03.03. Freshman Natalie Mar­tinson and Kate Van­der­steldt placed third and fourth, respec­tively. 

Junior Carmen Botha won the 60 meter hurdles in 9.36 seconds. She was fol­lowed by Judith Allison who ended second with a time of 9.49 seconds. Freshman Jillian Roney ended in 9.70 seconds for fourth place.

“It was my first home meet and it was really exciting,” Botha said. “It was probably the most fun I’ve had racing.” 

Towne said he takes pride in the 400 meter hurdles indoors which is nor­mally con­tested as an outdoor event. 

“It’s a focal point within our program,” he  said.

Allison ran the race for the first time in her col­le­giate career and came away with the victory. She ran the race in 1:04.32 seconds. 

Junior Calli Townsend came in a close second with a time of 1:04.97. Roney and Botha took third and fourth, respec­tively. 

To end the day on the track, the women’s 4x400 meter relay won with a time of 4:08.73. The team was made up of Stamm, O’Leary, Rust, and Mango. 

The women’s track team com­petes on Sat­urday at the at GVSU Mike Lints Alumni Open in Allendale, MI.