By Rhett Butler for Berryvikings.com
BIRMINGHAM, Ala.—The Vikings' track & field team opened the season at the Crossplex Indoor Meet on Sunday. Berry--which fielded a full team for the first time in more than 30 years--set several school records. Full Results
"The meet went well, and we got what we wanted out of it," said Head Coach Luke Syverson. "I was getting the feel for where we stand as a team, and I like where we are at."
On the distance side, several notable performances set the tone for the meet. Senior Rachel Dorris came very close to her personal record, running 11:10.42 in the women's 3000m. She placed 12th overall and was first in her heat. Sophomore Alainna Chretien set a personal record 5:32.23 in the mile run. She bettered her PR by 27.64 seconds and placed her 12th overall and fourth in her heat.
On the men's side, Junior Sam Berendsen ran 9:09.01 in the 3000m, placing tenth overall and first in his heat. Berendsen set a personal record by 13.4 seconds. Freshman Will Knowlton made his collegiate track debut in high fashion, setting a personal record in the mile run of 4:35.65.
"Sam ran a great, tactical race," said Syverson. "He earned a PR, and it was great to see him race very intelligently. It was also awesome to see Will run so well in his first collegiate track race."
In the women's field events, two school records were set. Senior Alyssa Maker set a new record in the women's weight throw at 11.66m, placing 12th overall. Freshman Reagan Pifer set a new mark in the indoor women's pole vault after clearing 2.65m.
On the men's side, sophomore Gino Fabrizio competed in the weight throw and shot put. He set personal records of 12.43m in the weigh throw, and 12.60m in the shot put. These marks earned him 15th place and seventh place, respectively. Quincy Watford competed in the high jump for the first time in three years. Despite not competing since high school, he equaled his PR of 1.85m.
"Gino did really well today," Syverson said. "He hadn't competed in the shot put in two years. Quincy did well to jump what he did, and I'm really happy with his performance, too"
The Vikings will continue their season on February 5th at ETSU in Johnson City, Tennessee.
"This meet sets us up well for ETSU." said Syverson. "It was an eye-opener, and I think it gave everyone a good idea of what they need to do over the next two weeks. Overall, I'm pleased with today and look forward to seeing what a few more weeks of training will produce at ETSU."