LA CROSSE, Wis. – The MSOE women's track and field team split off with their male counterparts last weekend to participate at the Phil Esten Challenge, a two day meet. Unlike the Raider men who only had one day to compete and focused on both disciplines, the women used the meet to get their field athletes the most experience. The meet was specifically chosen to give the multi-event athletes a chance to compete in a full heptathlon before conference, as well as to challenge the squad with some of the best competition in the Midwest. The strategy worked, as seven Red & White student athletes placed in the top-20 in six different events.
9th out of 21
TOP FIELD PERFORMER
You can tell when Jerica Kotarak (Wind Lake, Wis. / Muskego) is fully healthy because she comes close to winning every event that she participates in. This past meet was no exception as the senior placed second in the triple jump with a distance of 11.40 meters. Kotarak followed that up with a third place showing in the long jump, ending with a mark of 5.53 meters. The presumed focus for her in the last few meets is to keep rising in the rankings in search of one last national championship trip
TOP HEPTATHLON PERFORMER
Rachel Ruona (Grafton, Wis. / Grafton) claimed the top spot amongst the three Raiders participants in the heptathlon at the meet. The seven event totals saw Ruona claim 11th place out of 16 competitors. The junior placed highly in both the 800-meter run (4th – 2:31.74) and javelin throw (2nd – 34.29 meters), while grabbing a top ten spot in the shot put. Her overall performance also led to personal bests in the 100 meter hurdles, javelin, and 800 meter run.
RAIDERS IN THE TOP 20
Lexi Maruga (Anamosa, Iowa / Anamosa) – 16th in 3000 meter steeplechase
Bianca Trombley (Elkhorn, Wis. / Elkhorn Area) – 5th in triple jump, 6th in high jump
Rachael Kundrot (Fox River Grove, Ill. / Cary-Grove) – 12th in discus throw
Maia Heineck (Holmen, Wis. / Holmen) – 7th in javelin throw, 13th in heptathlon
Samantha Brooker (Chicago, Ill. / Lane Tech College Prep) – 15th in heptathlon, 20th in javelin throw
The women will rejoin the men's squad when both head to the Beloit Relays this Saturday for an all-day event.