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TRACK AND FIELD (CANADA WEST)
SATURDAY, FEBRURARY 25, 2012
CANADA WEST CHAMIONSHIPS
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
BENSON’S GOLD IN THE 1500M LEADS SPARTANS THREE-MEDAL DAY
SASKATOON, Saskatchewan – Led by Fiona Benson, who earned a gold medal in the 1500m event, the Trinity Western track and field teams were on the podium three times on the second day of the Canada West championships at the Saskatoon Fieldhouse.
Click here for complete results from the Canada West championships.
The second-year Benson, who earned a silver medal in the 1000m race Friday, bettered her spot on the podium, claiming her first ever Canada West gold medal with a time of 4:34.09 in the 1500m. With her first place finish Benson qualified for the CIS national championships Mar. 8-10.
While Benson grabbed top spot in her event, first-year high jumper Emma Nuttall finished in a tie for first, clearing 1.79m, but had to settle for silver, her first at the Canada West level, on a countback. With a season’s best 1.81m cleared earlier this year, Nuttall had already qualified for the upcoming national championships.
Rounding out the Spartans medal haul was first-year Blair Johnston, who took home the bronze medal in the 1500m event with a time of 4:02.60.
“It was another good day for us on the track and in the field,” said Spartans coach Laurier Primeau. “Having these athletes earn medals so early in their university careers is just so great for the long-term growth of our program. But like yesterday, while we’re proud of our accomplishments, we’re looking forward so that we can be better and start competing for team championships as well as the individual accolades we are earning now.”
As a team, both the Spartans men’s and women’s teams finished seventh out of eight teams with 22.5 points.
Trinity Western had two graduating seniors running their last race as Spartans this weekend. Marissa Ratzlaff – who started her Spartans career with the women’s soccer team before moving to the track and field team last year – finished 22nd in the 1500m event in a time of 5:10.52 while Jason Carwile ran his last two races Friday, finishing 10th in the 1000m in 2:33.89 and helping the Spartans 4x800m team to a fourth place finish with a time of 7:54.89.
Amongst other top 10 performances from Trinity Western athletes were first-year Jake Powrie finishing sixth in the high jump, clearing 1.82m, first-year Alex Love finishing sixth in the pole vault with a day’s best of 4.06m and first-year Eric Dupuis finishing eighth in the triple jump with distance of 13.09m.
Along with Benson and Ratzlaff, the Spartans had two other athletes competing in the women’s 1500m as second-year Alison Jackson finished 13th in 4:53.19 and first-year Nikki Bell finished 23rd in 5:11.75.
Second-year Andrew Ott finished 17th in the 600m event with a time of 1:26.02.
First-year Calum Innes finished eighth in the 60m dash preliminary race with a time of 7.08, qualifying for the finals, but did not race in the final due to a nagging injury.
Trinity Western finished the Canada West track and field championships with six medals in total. On Friday, Innes earned gold in the 60m hurdles, Benson won a silver in the 1000m and Powrie grabbed bronze in the pentathlon.
At the post-event awards banquet, Nuttall was given honourable mention for Canada West Female Rookie of the Year and Female Field Event Athlete of the Year, Innes was given honourable mention for Male Rookie of the Year and Male Track Athlete of the Year and Benson was given honourable mention for the Female Community Service Student-Athlete of the Year and Female Track Athlete of the Year.
Final Team Standings
1. Calgary (75 pts.)
2. Regina (74)
3. Victoria (67)
4. Saskatchewan (66.5)
5. Manitoba (56)
6. Alberta (43)
7. Trinity Western (22.5)
8. Lethbridge (5)
1. Saskatchewan (111 pts.)
2. Calgary (80)
3. Alberta (79)
4. Victoria (40)
5. Manitoba (38)
6. Regina (32.5)
7. Trinity Western (22.5)
8. Lethbridge (1)
The Spartans Innes, Nuttall and Benson will now compete in the CIS national championships Mar. 8-10, hosted by Manitoba.
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