May 25, 2013
PUEBLO, Colo. - The Grand Valley State track and field teams finished up competition at the 2013 NCAA Division II Outdoor Track & Field Championship on Saturday (May 25), and again it was senior Sam Lockhart leading the way for the Lakers. Lockhart won her second individual national title in as many days and helped the women's team to a third place finish. Both women's relay teams also found themselves putting their names in the GVSU record books, setting new school records in both events.
The GVSU women's team was eclipsed on the final day of competition by Academy of Art (60 points) and Johnson C. Smith (54), as the Lakers tied with Lincoln (Mo.) for third at 51 team points. Adams State (42) rounded out the top five.
On the men's side, the Lakers did not score any points on the final day of competition, but came home in 27th place with 10 total points. The men's title was won by St. Augustine's (95), followed by Ashland (57), Adams State (44), Grand Canyon (40) and Western State (36).
A day after setting a new championship meet record in the discus throw, Lockhart set a new facility record in the women's shot put, winning the title by over four feet with a toss of 16.75 meters (54'11.5"). She was just two inches short of a new school record in the event. All five of Lockhart's recorded throws would have been enough to win the title in the event. Dating back to 2011, a GVSU thrower has now won five of the last six national championships in the shot put between both indoor and outdoor, the only blemish coming in the 2012 outdoor season, when Lockhart and teammate Lauren Buresh finished second and third, respectively.
Lockhart ends her storied career as a Laker with a final tally of five individual national titles (three indoor, two outdoor), 13 career All-American honors (seven outdoor, six indoor) and was part of four team national titles (two indoor, two outdoor).
In the men's shot put, senior Matt Armstrong finished 10th with a throw of 16.97 meters (55'8.25"), while senior Donny Stiffler finished 15th with a toss of 16.36 meters (53'8.25").
The women's 4x100 meter relay team of sophomore Carly Scott, junior Kayla Addison, junior Michaela Lewis and sophomore Brittney Banister finished sixth to earn All-American honors and set a new school record in the process, crossing the line in a time of 45.58 seconds.
The final event of the night was the 4x400 meter relay and the Laker women had a strong showing, earning All-American honors with a fifth-place finish. The team of freshman Brittany Terry, Banister, sophomore Andrea Kober and Franklin crossed the line in a time of 3:41.48, another new school record.
In the men's pole vault, sophomore Bret Myers just barely missed out on an All-American honor, finishing ninth after clearing a height of 4.95 meters (16'2.75"). The best height was tied for eighth, but Myers was relegated to ninth on misses. Senior teammate Kevin Leland finished 13th in the event with a height of 4.80 meters (15'9").
Senior Jennifer Fuller finished 17th in the women's high jump, her best height coming at 1.70 meters (5'7").
Junior Larry Julson crossed the line in 11th in the 1,500 meter run, finishing in a time of 4:00.37.
In the 100 meter hurdles, junior Kalena Franklin added her fourth career All-American honor and her first in the 100 meter hurdles, finishing fifth with a time of 13.62 seconds.
The Lakers had a trio of student-athletes competing in the 5,000 meter run, led by freshman Allyson Winchester, who finished 14th with a time of 18:03.50. Junior Hannah Osborn was 20th (18:18.31), while junior Madie Rodts was 22nd (18:31.29).
On the men's side, junior Alan Peterson finished 13th in the event with a time of 15:24.30.
The United States Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association will announce national athletes of the year in the coming days, and Lockhart, who was named the Division II Indoor Women's Field Athlete of the Year, has a strong case to be named the outdoor honoree, as well.