Bison track’s West Coast trip ends with success

Attention starts to turn to Summit League Championships

The Bison track and field are back in the region after a busy week in California.

While the rest of us were enjoying Easter ham and a few good days off, the Bison track and field teams were hard at work. With both teams heading down to California together, plenty of highlights were racked up over the course of four meets.

The first meet, dedicated to multi-events, took place April 17 in Azusa, California. After day one in the decathlon, sophomore Tony Ukkelberg led the Bison men with 3,630 points.

For the women, senior Amanda Levin took charge in the heptathlon, recording personal bests in her first four events. The lineup of events included 14.53 seconds in the 100-meter hurdles, 1.64 meters in the high jump, 13.07 meters in the shot put and 24.54 seconds in the 200-meter dash.

After four events, Levin was already 127 points ahead of where she was at after the same events back in March when she jumped into third all time for NDSU. However, third place wasn’t good enough for her, so in day two, Levin shattered the top all-time score for Bison women with 5,695 points.

As day two of the meet in Azusa was underway, another meet, the Pacific Coast Intercollegiate, took place in Long Beach, California. There Alex Talley launched his hammer throw 210 feet, 7 inches, putting him fifth in NDSU history. He is now No. 34 in the NCAA this year.

Also in the hammer throw, senior Hannah Frost threw 208 on the dot for the women. She is now fourth all time for the Bison.

On Saturday in Torrance, California, the Bison competed in the Mt. SAC Relays. At the meet, junior Elliott Stone ran a personal best 14:20.03 in the 5,000m to win his section and to jump to fourth all time for the Bison.

Freshman Beau Brannan ran the 800m that day with a time of 1:53.11, the fastest Bison time this season.

For the women, Kelby Anderson posted a 16:14.04 in the 5,000m, 10 seconds faster than her previous best. She now sits third all time for the Bison.

That same Saturday was the start of the final meet of NDSU’s long weekend. The Beach Invitational in Long Beach, California saw the Herd add some solid times.

Kari Wolfe threw over 50 meters for the third time this season, helping her maintain her position in the nation’s top 20.

Junior Bailey DeMar made her way up the NDSU records with two personal bests in the triple jump and the long jump. After jumping 41-8 in the triple jump, she now ranks fifth all time.

For the men, the big news came out of the shot put ring. Payton Otterdahl threw a personal best 70-01.50 to further extend his NDSU record and place second. However, Otterdahl did not finish first in the discus as he only fell behind world shot leader Ryan Crouser.

With both teams’ seasons coming to an end, personal bests continue to be produced and NDSU records broken.

The Herd has another set of meets this weekend and will finish off in the Summit League Championships May 8 in Macomb, Illinois.

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