Bison track & field perform well in outdoor season openers

Student-athletes compete in N. Carolina & S. Dakota

North Dakota State’s track & field student-athletes opened up their outdoor season by competing in two events over the past weekend, the Raleigh Relays in Raleigh, N.C. and the Yellow Jacket Spring Open in Spearfish, S.D.

Otterdahl starts outdoor season with a win

The athletes participating in throwing events were in Raleigh competing in the Raleigh Relays on the campus of North Carolina State University. Led by Peyton Otterdahl’s win in the shot put, the Bison throwers placed first, second and twelfth in the shot-put event on Thursday. Otterdahl, threw the shot 62-06.75 (19.07m), a personal best outdoors, earning his first title of the new outdoor season. NDSU’s Kristoffer Thomsen finished right behind Otterdahl in the event with a throw of 62-05.25 (57.21m). Sophomore Clayton Hannula finished in 12th place with a throw of 55-00.75 (16.78m). Otterdahl and Thomsen currently sit in third and fourth respectively in NCAA’s outdoor standings for their throws.

In the javelin, NDSU sophomore Matt Kraft finished in 17th place for the Bison throwing the javelin 187-8 (57.21m).

Also on Thursday, the women’s team competed in Raleigh as well. NDSU All-American Kari Wolfe finished third in the javelin in Raleigh with a toss of 170-11 (52.11m). Hayley Schmidt finished 13th in the same event with a toss of 139-4 (42.46m).

Meanwhile, senior Amanda Anderson led the Bison women in the shot put with a toss of 47-05.75 (14.47m).

On Saturday, NDSU’s throwers concluded the Raleigh Relays with the hammer throw.

Once again, Trevor Otterdahl, the reigning Summit League Indoor Field Athlete of the Year, led all Bison in the event while posting the second-best hammer throw of his career, 211-4 (64.42m), good enough for third place. He has now cracked the top 25 in the NCAA for the hammer throw this young outdoor season.

Tristan Bush also did well executing the second-best throw of his career, a throw of 192-0 (58.52m).

On the women’s side of the competition, NDSU’s Amanda Anderson led the women’s team with a third place finish in the discus in Raleigh. Anderson’s throw was 172-6 (52.58m) in her outdoor debut of the season.  

On Saturday, Amy Phillips made her name known among the other athletes and spectators with a win in the hammer throw. Phillips threw the hammer a blistering 225-5 (68.72m) to win the event. That is Phillips’ best personal throw, and she now owns the second-best hammer throw in NDSU outdoor track & field history. She is now just nine inches behind current record-holder, Maddy Niles, by a mere nine inches.

The Yellow Jacket Open

On Saturday at the Yellow Jacket Open in Spearfish, NDSU’s Katelyn Tschida won the heptathlon with a score of 3,862 points, edging NDSU’s Cora Andersen who finished with 3,713 points.

Not to be outdone by the throwers, Alissa Melvin won the triple jump with jumps combining 39-02.25 (11.94m). That total is Melvin’s best in her outdoor career.

Grace Emineth finished second in the long jump with a leap of 19-00.75 and finished third in the triple jump. The triple jump winner, Melvin, finished fifth in the long jump with a jump of 17-07.00 (5.36m), her personal best in the event.

On the men’s side, the Bison had three champions. Freshman Braden Brown won the high jump clearing 6-06.75 (2.00m). Hunter Merkley added another title to the Bison collection winning the long jump with a mark of 22-08.00 (6.91m), and finally, Jacob Van Dusseldorp vaulted over a height of 15-01.75 (4.62m) to win the pole vault event.

Both men’s and women’s teams will split squads again next weekend while competing. On Friday, April 1, the teams will be split among the Stanford University Invitational in Stanford, Calif., and the Mike Fanelli Classic in San Francisco, Calif. On Saturday, some of the athletes will be in Vermillion, S.D., for the University of South Dakota Early Bird.

Phillips and Otterdahl named Summit League’s Field Athletes of the Week

North Dakota State’s Amy Phillips and Trevor Otterdahl were named The Summit League’s Field Athletes of the Week following their performances at the Raleigh Relays on March 24-26.

Meanwhile, Phillips made her outdoor season debut by winning the hammer throw in Raleigh. Her hammer throw of 225-5 (68.72m) was her personal best at NDSU in the event and is currently the third-best in the NCAA this season. She also moves into second place all-time in the event at NDSU.

Otterdahl was one of the best in the country this weekend in his outdoor season debut winning the shot-put event at the Raleigh Relays in Raleigh, N.C. His throw of 62-06.75 (19.07m) was a personal best, ranks as the sixth best throw in the country and moves him into sixth on NDSU’s all-time list. He also finished third in the hammer throw with his second-best personal throw of 211-4 (64.42m).

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