Mounties Complete Day One of NAIA Indoor Track and Field National Championships

BROOKINGS, S.D. – Eastern Oregon Track and Field kicked off their competition on day one of the NAIA Indoor Track and Field Championships Thursday in the Sanford-Jackrabbit Athletic Complex in Brookings, South Dakota. One program record fell on the day in the men’s 4×400 meter relay and the highest finish by a Mountie came in the pentathlon where Elizabeth Grandle fell one spot short of earning All-American honors in 9th place.

Eastern Oregon will return to action for day two of the NAIA National Championships tomorrow morning with competition starting at 10 a.m. CST.

Kicking off competition on the track for the women was the 4×800 meter relay team consisting of Mattie Woodbury, Madelyn Nichols, Riley Morris, and Lauryn Mitchell. The squad finished 19th overall with a time of 9:38.38. While they didn’t qualify for the finals the group did move up to fourth all-time in the EOU Indoor records for the event.

Day one of the meet was also host to the complete pentathlon competition where two Mounties fought for their spot among the nations best multi athletes. Karli Bedard and Elizabeth Grandle represented Eastern Oregon entering as the No. 4 and 11 seeds respectively. Grandle got off to a hot start sitting in All-American territory heading into the final event but fell one spot short finishing ninth with 3,353 points (PR). Her three best performances came in the first three events where she finished eighth in the 60-meter hurdles (9.38 seconds), sixth in the high jump (1.62 meters), and first in the shot put (11.77 meters). Bedard finished 16th on the day with her best performance coming in the shot put where she finished 13th (9.47 meters).

Justin Ash competed first for the Mounties finishing 13th overall in the 5,000 meter prelims. Ash ran a personal best time of 14:46.97s improving upon his second-overall time in the EOU record book for the event. While he set a new PR, Ash narrowly missed making the finals as the top 12 qualified.

Later in the afternoon the men’s 4×400 Meter Relay Team took to the track putting up a season best time. The squad consisting of Bryson Spears, Mason Nichols, James Connally and Osman Osman finished with a time of 3:16.91 breaking their own school record (3:17.80) set earlier this season. Eastern’s relay team finished 18th and fell short of a final’s qualification.

Two men also represented the Mountaineers in the heptathlon on day one. Israel Miles (No. 5 seed) and Judson Mansfield (No. 15 seed) currently sit outside the top eight after completing four of seven events. Mansfield leads sitting in 11th place with 2,589 points thanks to strong performances in the shot put and high jump where he finished fourth (11.5 meters) and eighth (1.81 meters) respectively. Miles sits four spots behind in 15th with 2,449 points highlighted by a 9th place finish in the long jump with a mark of 6.21 meters.

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