Track and Field team head to GNACs

Mckenzie Lakey

Mckenzie Lakey

Simo Rul, Staff Reporter

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The CWU track and field team is gearing up for the GNAC championships on Friday, May 12, and Saturday, May 13. The Wildcats will head to Monmouth, Oregon, looking to qualify for the national championships.

Senior thrower Armando Tafoya has hit the NCAA provisional in the hammer and discus throws.

His best throw in the hammer was 58.91-meters on April 29 at WWU where he got first place.  His best throw in the discus was 51.10-meters on May 5 at the last home meet where he finished in fourth overall.

I’m “feeling good, feeling refreshed [and] ready for a big GNAC meet,” Tafoya said.

His mindset going into these is clear, and that is to throw as far as he can and prepare for the next one, Tafoya said.

“I’m hoping [for] some personal records (PR), [to] improve my national ranking, and [go] to nationals,” Tafoya said.

Tafoya said, he hopes to better his provisional marks in the discus and hammer throws because he is a few inches away from making it to nationals.

Hammer throw is Tafoya’s strongest event, but he said he would be happy going to nationals for both the hammer throw and discus.

Sophomore distance runner Alexa Shindruk hit the NCAA provisional by 0.03 seconds finishing with a time of 17:21.35 in the 5,000-meter run.

“I’m excited for GNAC’s,” Shindruk said. “We’ve been training hard for the last few months, so it’s exciting to be able to taper down, and hopefully perform well.”

Shindruk said she hopes her training pays off.

“Just going [to] know what I’ve been doing in practice, and know that I’ve been preparing for it,” Shindruk said. “Just believe that I can run what I’m hoping for, and get a PR.”

Competing in multiple events at the NCAA national championship meet is something that is still in play for Shindruk.

“I mean, yeah that’d be great. I don’t know the specifics of times for the 5,000,” Shindruk said.

Automatic qualification for nationals in the 5,000-meter run is 16:25.35. For shindruk to qualify automatically she would need to be about 56 seconds faster. She hit the provisional by 0.3 seconds.

Sophomore hurdler Mariyah Vongsaveng has hit the provisional in the 100-meter hurdles. Her best time of the season in the 100-meter hurdles is 14.09 set on May 5, which was the last home meet.

Even though Vongsaveng has set her PR, she still has not found the success that she wanted. Vongsaveng said she wants to PR in the 100-hurdles.

“I’m ready [for GNAC’s], this outdoor season has been really hard for me,” Vongsaveng said. “It’s hard to come off a good indoor season, and just not see the results you want outdoors.”

Vongsaveng has been competing in indoor and outdoor competitions for the previous 6 months.

“I think it’s just, my body’s just hit its point where it’s tired,” Vongsaveng said. “I just gotta learn how to push through and fight through for the rest of the season.”

Some of Vongsaveng’s goals are that she wants to win GNAC’s as a team, she wants to help the team as a whole reach their goals. Vongsaveng said she has a goal to improve her provisional, be top 20 in the nation and get to nationals.

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Track and Field team head to GNACs