Women tabbed HCAC favorites, men picked fourth

Women tabbed HCAC favorites, men picked fourth

Fresh off a resounding effort in its season openers, the 2017 Manchester University indoor men's and women's track and field teams take aim at Trine University's Keith Turner Alumni Invitational Saturday, Jan. 21.

Meet details: Field and running events are scheduled for an 11 a.m. start at TU's Keith E. Busse/Steel Dynamics Athletic and Recreation Center in Angola, Ind.

Spartan Shorts: MU was tabbed the 2017 Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference women's preseason favorite, while the men were picked fourth on the annual coaches poll, released Thursday, Jan. 19. The defending champions received 98 points and eight first-place votes to outdistance runner-up selection Rose-Hulman by 16. Rose-Hulman's men (100 points, 10 first-place votes) were tabbed favorites to claim their seventh straight indoor team title followed by Anderson University (82), Hanover College (78) and the Black and Gold (75).  Several individuals were on the Athletes to Watch list as senior thrower Drew Foster (Seymour, Ind.), senior distance runner Alex Gudeman (Rochester, Ind.) and junior sprinter Harrison Hollis (Lebanon, Ind.) were noted for the men, and the senior trio of distance runners Mariah Jordan (Fort Wayne, Ind.) and Tiffany Harber (Columbia City, Ind.) along with thrower Shay Aator (West Lafayette, Ind.) were recognized for the women along with junior jumps specialist and sprinter Paige Keller (Greenville, Ohio) and junior thrower Whitney White (Portage, Ind.) and sophomore sprinter Dasia Beck (Indianapolis, Ind.) … The upperclasswoman duo of Jordan and Keller didn't take long to find itself among the Track and Field Results Reporting System/Direct Athletics Division III top 100. Keller's 10 foot, one and a quarter inch clearance at Rose-Hulman Jan. 13 put her at number 73, while Jordan's winning time of 10:53.84 in the 3000 meters placed her 77th. Foster holds down the highest men's ranking with a top 150 mark in the weight throw (45 feet, four and a quarter inches – No. 141) … Seven events have already hit qualifying standards for the 2017 HCAC Championships through just the first weekend. Among the women's events, Beck has the second-fastest 60-meter clocking (8.28 seconds); Jordan and Harber along with freshmen Hannah Wappes (Columbia City, Ind.) and Emily Ewen (Wolcott, Ind.) hold down four of the top five times in the 3000; Keller is third in the pole vault; and White and freshman Emily Bailey (Warsaw, Ind.) are within the top eight in the shot put. Three men's events are represented as seniors Thomas Dean (Bremen, Ind.) and Blake Harris (Fort Wayne, Ind.) are in the top eight of the 3000; senior Jordan Crosby (Indianapolis, Ind.) and his 9.1 second effort in the 60 meter hurdles at Terre Haute sits sixth-fastest; and reigning conference field Athlete of the Week Austin Roberts, a freshman from Indianapolis, Ind., has the fifth longest leap in the long jump … The Spartans break from competition following the Trine trek until Saturday, Feb. 4, when they compete at Anderson University's Raven Invitational.

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