Track breaks records at Drake Relays


Saint Louis track and field saved some of their most impressive performances for the prestigious Drake Relays, which took place in Des Moines, Iowa. Several relay teams broke school records throughout the track meet. Some Billikens also competed in the Kip Janvrin Open that took place at Simpson College, located in Indianola, Iowa.

First off with the strong performances was the men’s 4×1600-meter relay team. The team was composed of senior Hiob Gebisso, sophomore Kevin Ganahl, sophomore Manuel de Backer and sophomore Sean Conlin. The foursome managed to break a school record in the relay that had stood since 2012, with a time of 16:56.96.

Meanwhile, the men’s 4×200 relay team, which was made of sophomore Will Moore, junior Josh Freivogel, senior Griffin McCurren and senior Kyle Clinkingbeard, just barely surpassed last year’s Drake Relays time with a race that they ran in 1:29.16.

Meanwhile, the men’s 4×400 relay team also made school history, although it did not come in the form of a school record. The relay team, composed of Clinkingbeard, Freivogel, Moore and McCurren, qualified for the finals in the event, the first time that the Billikens have qualified for any Drake Relays final in program history.

The women also had several strong performances. Senior Hannah Rohde finished in seventh place in the unseeded 800 meters. She earned the seventh place finish with a time of 2:10.84. Sophomore Ann Harlos finished eighth in the 400-meter hurdles, crossing the finish line in 1:01.42.

Several Billikens competed in the Kip Janvrin Open at Simpson College, as well. The Billikens had a strong performance there in the women’s 4×100-meter relay. The team, composed of senior Rachel Staab, sophomore Avery Pacella, senior Jenna Ginsberg and senior Jackie Bynes placed fourth. Their fourth place finish came with a recorded time of 51.66.

The Billikens have nearly completed their outdoor track season. The only scheduled meet left for SLU is the Atlantic 10 Conference Championships. This year, the A-10 Conference Championships are scheduled to take place on Saturday, May 6.

The A-10 Conference Championships will be located at the University of Massachusetts, in Amherst, Massachusetts. This means that the Billikens will have to travel quite a bit before the meet. All SLU track fans will be hoping that the travel won’t hinder the Billikens, who have shown through broken school records that they have certainly improved in several events through the outdoor track season.

After the A-10 Conference Championships, the majority of the SLU track and field team will be done. However, if any Billikens run qualifying times, they will take part in the NCAA West Preliminary Rounds on May 25-27 and the NCAA Championships on June 8-11. Reaching either of these rounds would be a tremendous achievement for a runner from a program of SLU’s size.

Looking forward, SLU will hope that the seniors they lose won’t hurt them too much as they look to improve starting in the fall.

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