GVSU Hosts Bill Clinger Classic, dominates field events


GVL / Alexis Velazquez

Rosemary Booher, Staff Reporter

The Grand Valley State Lakers indoor track & field team held the Bill Clinger Classic indoor track meet on Friday Jan. 17, at the Kelly Family Sports Center, where they honored the GVSU track and field coach who started the program in 1968.  

This was the Laker’s third and longest meet in Allendale so far in the season, the first event started at 2:45 p.m. and the last event started at 10 p.m. Although GVSU track and field head coach Jerry Baltes thinks lengthy meets aren’t ideal, he feels that here at GVSU we have a support crew forthe program that draws other teams to want to compete here.

“Friday’s meet was a long competition; ideally we would like to have a three or four hour track meet and get what we need done and move on,” Baltes said. “We have a great support crew with our athletic training, game operations, sports info and we provide great competition so a lot of programs like to come to the Kelly to compete.”

GVSU was strong in their feild events, bringing in both first and second place in the women’s weight throw, Franesha Robinson-Mitchell in first (19.23-meters) and Bobbie Goodwin in second (19.22-meters). Justin Scavarda also claimed first place in the weight throw (20.02-meters) for the men’s team as well as second place in shot put (17.16-meters).

“Some of the highlights were Franny and Justine in the weight throw,” Baltes said. “They both had huge PR’s that should get them into the NCAA Championships.”

The Lakers continued with their field events by earning second place in both the men’s and women’s triple jump, Mac Mitchell with a jump of 13.51-meters and Anna Obi with 11.78-meters. GVSU also took second in the pole vault for the men’s team and took fourth for the women’s team, Jacob Battani with 5.06-meters and Elli Kimes with 3.87-meters.

On the track the GVSU women’s team came in third in the 600-meter dash with a finish at 11:40.11 from freshman Molly McLaughlin. Klaudia O’Malley finished in fifth place in the 3000-meter race with a time of 9:54.66. Eighth place was taken by Abby Crouch in the 800-meter race with a 2:18. 35 time.

The men’s team claimed both fourth and seventh palce in the 800-meter run, as Jacob Domaglaski finished with a time of 1:55.40 and Alexander Sanford finished with 1:56.53. Tyler Kirkwood (8.32 seconds) finished fourth while Tyler Mansfield (8.55 seconds) finished sixth in the 60-meter hurdles.

GVL / Alexis Velazquez

“Tyler Kirkwood and Tyler Mansfield both finished well in the hurdles,” Baltes said. “If they can put together a clean race they will race fast.”

Moving on to the teams next meet, Baltes is looking forward to competing on the road but plans to maintain the teams focus on training and taking each day as it comes.

“This weekend will be a great weekend to get away from our home track and see some different competition and take the next step in our competitive season,” Baltes said. “We just need to stay focused on the day-to-day process of training and focus on getting better each day and each week.”

The Laker’s next meet will take place in Hillsdale, Michigan on Friday, Jan. 24, where they will compete in the Hillsdale College Crossover.