Running into the future

Look back at the career of Track and Cross Country athletes

Daniel Newman, Sports Editor

Nine of the ten track and field seniors helped the Falcons win a team championship three out of the four years they competed. Here’s a look at the individual accomplishments of each of these ten seniors.

Cross Country/Track and Field

Elius Graff

Computer Engineering major from Portland, Oregon. Finished eighth overall in the GNAC Men’s Cross Country championships in 2019, and finished in eighth place in the 5000 meters at the GNAC track and field championships in 2019. Ran two personal bests in 2021, three time member of the GNAC all-academic team.

Dania Holmberg

Psychology major from Eagle, Idaho. Had an exceptional 2019 cross country season, finishing 21st overall at the NCAA Division II Cross-Country championships. Made three NCAA championships in indoor and outdoor track throughout her career, in the 1500, 3000, and 5000 meter races at various points. Achieved PR’s in the 800 meters and 1500 meters this season.

Kate Lilly

Mathematics major from Renton, Washington. Finished in 12th place at the GNAC cross country championships in 2018 and second in the championships in 2019. In track and field, finished in tenth in the 5000 at the NCAA Track and Field Championships in 2018, and finished fifth in the same event the next year. Won a GNAC championship in the Women’s 3000 meters indoor. Returned for final outdoor season to finish in second place in both the 3000 and 5000 meter races and the GNAC Championships.

Elizabeth Thompson

History major from Portland, Oregon. Finished in 17th overall at the 2019 GNAC Cross Country Championships. Finished in eighth place in the 1500 at the GNAC outdoor championships in 2019, and sixth in the same event in 2021.

Track and Field

Grace Bley

Exercise Science major from Puyallup, Washington. Arrived at SPU in 2018, three time GNAC champion in the 200 meters, two second place finishes in the 100 meters at the GNAC championships. Also part of the three-time GNAC championship winning 4×100 relay team.

Kellie May

Nursing major from Irvine, California. Finished in fourth place in the long jump and fourth in the heptathlon at the GNAC Indoor Track and field championships in 2018. Had the same finish in the long jump and finished in fifth place in the triple jump in the 2018 GNAC Outdoor Track and Field Championship, and finished in third place in the triple jump in the 2021 outdoor championship.

“We worked so hard given our circumstances, fought through a multitude of injuries, and ended this year as GNAC conference champions. Though we’ve won many times while I’ve been at SPU, this year was my favorite and most meaningful win,” May said. “I truly feel blessed to have ended my athletic career with a team win in the most difficult year our program has experienced. Being a Falcon means always working hard, never giving up, and supporting your teammates on and off the track.”

Scout Cai

Exercise Science major from Colfax, Washington. Three-time GNAC indoor track heptathlon championship. Two-time GNAC champion in the pole vault. Finished eighth in the NCAA in the Pole Vault and seventh in the heptathlon in 2019, competing at the NCAA Championships in the Pole Vault in 2021.

Renick Meyer

Biology major from Gresham, Oregon. Finished in seventh place in the NCAA outdoor track championships in both the long jump and the heptathlon in 2018. This year, Meyer won the GNAC combined event championship in the heptathlon, won the long jump and the 100 meter high hurdles, and was on both winning relay teams.

“My favorite memory was winning GNAC outdoor women’s championship with my team this year! That and all the California track meets we have attended over the years have been so fun,” Meyer said.

“Being a falcon athlete has been tough but very rewarding. It takes a lot of mental and physical energy to do it every day, but my teammates always made it worth it.”

Julia Stepper

Secondary Education major from Woodland, Washington. Three outdoor GNAC championships as part of the 4×100 relay team. Finished in third place in the 60 meter race at the GNAC indoor championships in 2018, finished in fourth place in the 100 meter dash at the GNAC outdoor championships in 2018 and 2021.

Emily Northey

Biopsychology major from Brier, Washington. A pole vaulter, Northey cleared ten feet for the first time at the GNAC indoor championships in 2020, finishing in 10th. Northey finished in 15th in the event at this year’s GNAC outdoor championships.

“Being a student athlete has been one of the most rewarding experiences of my life. It is very challenging to try to balance it all, but so worth it! The friendships and memories I have built during my time as a student athlete at SPU mean so much to me,” Northey said. “Missing out on a season of competition due to the pandemic was hard, but it made our team win at GNACs even more meaningful.”