Barrage of personal bests by SPU

Konner Hancock

The Falcons crossed border, took over meet with numerous wins

By Konner Hancock

The Seattle Pacific University track team gained traction on numerous personal bests, 21 alone in the Falcons’ most recent meet.

The Falcons crossed the border into Vancouver, British Columbia, to square off against a number of other teams. The meet took place on March 30 through 31.

The Falcons racked up 21 personal records altogether; 11 for the women and 10 for the men.

On the women’s side, those 11 personal records were recorded by 11 different athletes.

Starting with first year Julia Stepper, who powered down the straightaway to a time of 12.21 seconds, which is a quarter of a second better than her previous best. Stepper won the women’s 100-meter dash in the University of British Columbia meet.

Then, senior Becca Houk led in the 400, she was first across the line with a time of 58.33, eclipsing her old best of 58.78 when she won the 400 in a meet in mid-March.

Along with Houk, the 400 was a popular amongst the SPU women, with senior Chynna Phan, 58.52, and sophomore Grace Bley, 58.68, also recording personal best marks.

The 400 placements went 1-2-3-4 for SPU. Hogging up the front four was Houk, Scout Cai, Phan and Bley. “We had great weather and our team has started to respond from training so the meet was a success for our entire team and gives us lots of momentum moving forward,” said Assistant Track and Field and Cross Country Coach Audra Smith.

In addition to Stepper, Cai, Houk, Phan and Bley, the other six personal bests came from senior Hailey Kettel, 2:24.62 in the 800, sophomore Kate Lilly, 2:14.03 in the 800, sophomore Katherine Walter, 4:52.33 in the 1500, first year Megan Hoback, 4-11 in the high jump, first year Kellie May, 17-5 ½ in the long jump, and first year Renick Meyer 12.31 in the 400.

The Great Northwest Athletics Conference took notice to Meyer’s athletic abilities and presented her with the Woman’s Indoor Track & Field Freshman of the Year Award.

“Renick has been very successful in the transition from high school to college. She is still learning and adjusting, but when it come to performing on the weekends, she always brings her best. We are proud of her and are so happy she is a Falcon,” Smith said.

In the men’s events, Colin Boutin and Joseph Perkins each set two personal bests, one in the 800 and another in the 1500, 2:13.85 and 4:22.75 for Boutin and 2:13.20 and 4:26.84 for Perkins.

Alongside them in the 800 were Elius Graff (2:01.72), Shad Galloway (2:05.06) and Royce Garcia, 2:08.05, Chris Bench, 2:07.22, and Aiden Manley, 4:25.90 in the 1500.

Manley dropped nearly 20 seconds off from his college debut mark of 4:45.52 on March 3 at the Boitano Invite.

Also setting a lifetime best was sophomore Christian Wong in the 200 with a time of 24.39.

The team’s next meet is Friday, April 6, in Bellingham for the WWU Team Invitational at 2 p.m.