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Waldorf claims seven titles in Warrior Invitational

Waldorf Warriors LogoBy Aaron Schneider

FOREST CITY – The Waldorf University men’s track and field team debuted in its first-ever home competition, capturing seven first-place finishes during Saturday’s Warrior Invitational.

“I was very impressed with the performances,” Waldorf coach Kelsey Riggins said. “It was great to compete at home and have the community and other sports teams come support us.”

Caleb Gilbertson locked up the long jump title, recording a distance of 6.41 meters (21 feet, 0.25 inches). The sophomore from Hayfield, Minnesota set an outdoor school record in the discus throw with a 28.83-meter (94-foot-7-inch) toss, after bringing down the record a day earlier.

Freshman Justin Jacobi claimed first in the 110-meter hurdles, delivering a time of 15.67 seconds and an outdoor school record. Gilbertson and Jacobi also represented the Warriors by competing in the decathlon at the Phil Esten Challenge in La Crosse, Wisconsin on Thursday and Friday.

“Caleb and Justin competed three days in a row and really showed some guts,” Riggins said. “It was great to see them compete so well all week.”

Freshman Mark Ahlers secured first in the 800 for the Warriors, closing out the race in 2 minutes, 3.07 seconds for an outdoor school record.

Junior Nathan Meiners went the distance to first (34:46.45) in the 10,000 while junior Korey Beaman earned first (59.96) in the 400 hurdles.

Freshman Isaiah Craig leaped to first in the triple jump at 13.05 meters (42 feet, 9.75 inches), and freshman Demetrius Baker won the hammer throw with a 33.99-meter (11-foot, 6.25-inch) performance.

Jonah Remker charged to second (51.77) in the 400 as the freshman from Owatonna, Minnesota crushed the previous outdoor school record by 1.71 seconds.

“Jonah ran a great open 400,” Riggins said.

Craig took third (51.78) in the 400 with a personal-record time while finishing 0.01 seconds behind Remker. Sophomore Chasen Selsor and freshman Eithan Esensee also competed in the 400, chasing down times of 55.92 seconds and 56.91 seconds, respectively.

“I was particularly impressed with the 400 performances.” Riggins said. “The majority of them ran for season-bests in a very tough race.”

Junior Ovan Garcia battled to third (4:29.47) in the 1,500, and senior Cody Clark earned fifth (4:36.79) with a strong kick.

“Ovan ran a great race for us in the 1,500 with a nice finish,” Riggins said.

Waldorf freshmen Cameron NewsomeKhalil Walker and Tyrique Graham all competed unattached. Newsome took first in the high jump as he cleared the bar at 1.90 meters (6 feet, 2.75 inches), and he was also the triple jump runner-up at 12.45 meters (40 feet, 10.15 inches).

Walker locked up second (23.84) in the 200, crossed the finish line in the 100 in 11.37 seconds and ran the 400 in 53.77 seconds. Graham posted a time of 54.35 seconds in the 400 and raced to a time of 11.38 seconds in the 100.

“Our unattached athletes all performed very well,” Riggins said. “It was great to see them be able to compete and they really showed how bright the future is for the program.”

Freshman Andre Davis fought to second (15.95) in the 110 hurdles, Craig secured second in the high jump at 1.85 meters (6 feet, 0.83 inches),

Waldorf’s football and men’s soccer programs played a vital role in the execution of the first-ever Warrior Invitational.

“I would like to thank Coach Kent Anderson and Coach Michael Wilson for volunteering themselves and their athletes to come work this meet,” Riggins said.

Waldorf continues its season on May 7 at the Meet of UnSaintly at St. Paul, Minnesota, starting at 11 a.m. The Warriors then host the North Star Athletic Association (NSAA) Outdoor Championships on May 11-13.