February 18, 2012

First Track Meet of the Season: Franciscan Shows Promise

BEXLEY, Ohio —The Franciscan University of Steubenville's track and field team participated in its first meet of the season, the Rick Meindl Last Call indoor track competition on Saturday. While the event was considered a preseason scrimmage for the team, the Barons and Lady Barons proved themselves up to the challenge, finishing 11th and 12th out of 13 teams with 30 and 16 points, respectively. 

"It was a good beginning to what has the potential to be a great season," said head coach Vince Oliver. "The meet presented significant competition for our team and allowed us as coaches to establish a base for where our student athletes are at this very early point in our training season." 

This is the second year Franciscan has taken part in Capital University's indoor meet, a month before the regular, outdoor season begins. Oliver hopes that the experience gained in such a competitive atmosphere will give the team a feel for where they need to be in a few weeks. "It's our job now to build the positives that will make a huge impact this season and take great strides forward." 

Key performances for the Barons included sophomore Joey Schlueter's sixth place in the 3 kilometer run, with a time of 9:35.39; the 5 kilometer run, in which senior Kevin LeRoy ran a 16:56.03, placing sixth overall; and freshman James Marra's 53.31, fifth place in the 400 meter dash. Junior Bill Jones earned significant points for the team, placing fifth overall in the 800 meter run, with a time of 2:01.67 and first in the mile run, with a 4:22. The distance medley team also placed second with a time of 11:11.75, and Blake Bonilla, in his first attempt at the long jump, broke the Franciscan University men's record of 5.34 meters set in 2010, with a jump of 5.93 meters.

The Lady Barons also earned some impressive times for their first meet of the season. Senior Emily Kraudel placed fifth in the 400 meter dash, with a time of 1:04.54, senior Sara Mueller placed seventh in the mile with a time of 5:56.76, and freshman Anna Brown placed eighth overall in the 5 kilometer run and the mile, 20:50.54 and 6:04.57, respectively. 

The track and field team will travel to the Grove City Invitational in Grove City, Pa. on Tuesday, March 20, for its next meet.

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