GRAND FORKS, N.D. – The University of North Dakota track and field squads were back on their home track on Saturday for the second time in less than a month and the Fighting Hawks took full advantage.
Head coach Kevin Galbraith competed roughly 60 percent of his roster at today’s UND Indoor Tune-Up, resting the remainder in anticipation of the upcoming Big Sky Conference Indoor Championship. The remainder utilized today’s meet as a last-chance competition and responded with several event titles and a large handful of top-three finishes.
Galbraith said his student-athletes made the most of the day.
“You look at this as a stepping stone to greater success at the conference meet,” said Galbraith. “We had a lot of really good performances, a lot of good marks.”
On the track, UND swept the men’s and women’s 200-meter dashes behind senior Tianna McKinney and freshman Cody Roder. McKinney picked up UND’s first event title of the day, winning with a season-best time of 24.77 seconds, good for sixth in the Big Sky this season. Roder, meanwhile, continued his standout rookie season with a PR time of 22.55.
“Tianna and Cody in the 200 meters were both great, just fantastic,” said Galbraith.
UND also swept the men’s and women’s shot put. Keely Walker won the women’s event with a throw of 44 feet, 1.50 inches (13.45) meters while Michael Qusenberry finished first in the men’s event with a mark of 54-7.50 (16.65). Quesenberry’s throw ranked No. 6 in the Big Sky all season.
“The guys’ throws were much stronger [today] than last week,” said Galbraith.
In the women’s weight throw, UND placed the 2-through-5 finishers, including fourth-place finisher Destinee Haas’ PR of 53-01.50 (16.19). On the men’s side, Adam Mehr and Tyler Kolander placed second and third, respectively.
The Fighting Hawks closed out the meet with a strong day in the jumps, including a pair of event titles by Autumn Stokes in the long jump and triple jump. Stokes established PRs in both events, reaching 16-05.00 (5.00) in the long jump and 36-11.00 (11.25) in the triple jump.
“We had a lot of good marks,” said Galbraith.”
“We got what we needed. We didn’t get everything we necessarily wanted, but we certainly got almost all of what we needed.”
The Fighting Hawks will now turn their focus to the Big Sky Indoor Conference Championship, set for Feb. 22-24 in Flagstaff, Ariz.