Track season opens

Men’s and women’s track and field teams begin season at Dakota Duals meet.

The North Dakota men’s and women’s track and field teams opened their seasons last weekend at the Dakota Duals indoor meet in Fargo — which saw sophomore women’s thrower Ke-Ke Burks break North Dakota’s school record in the weight throw.

Burks’ throw of 55 feet, 9 inches broke the previous mark of 52 feet, 1.75 inches set by Christine Weinreich in 2012.

After a record-setting freshman season, sophomore sprinter Stephanie Clarke stood out Saturday with her first-place finish in the 400-meters with a time of 57.62 seconds — UND’s only event title that day.

Clarke also was part of the 4×400 relay with freshmen Caitlyn Carlson and Alyssa Espinoza and senior Savanna Weller, which finished third with a time of 3 minutes, 57.37 seconds.

Weller notched a runner-up performance in the 600-meters with a 1 minute, 35.90 seconds while junior Chantel Urban claimed second in the shot put with a throw of 12.53 meters. Burks’ record-setting throw also put her the runner-up in the weight throw.

Junior Rochelle Robb placed third in the high jump with a mark of 5 feet, 3 inches.

Men’s team

The men’s team also found success in sophomore D’Monte Farley as he claimed first place in the 60-meter dash with a time of 7.01 seconds.

Farley is beginning his sophomore season after a freshman performance that saw him tally large numbers in the jumps. Saturday, he finished the triple jump with 45 feet, 6.50 inches and placed third in the long jump with a leap of 22 feet, 7.75 inches.

Farley’s wasn’t the only athlete that captured a runner-up performance. Other included: freshman Tyler Olson in the 40-meters (50.83 seconds), junior Tyler Colling in the pole vault (15 feet, 7 inches), Shawn Johnson in the shot put (53 feet, 7.50 inches) and Roman Waldera in the weight throw (57 feet, 3.50 inches).

Olson also clocked the 4×400 meter relay with a fourth place finish at 3 minutes, 28.98 seconds with sophomores Jimmy Evers and John LeClerc and freshman Jared Michel.

Moving forward

“We had a really good meet,” UND coach Kevin Galbraith said. “Most of the team is ahead of where we were at this time last year, so that’s very encouraging.”

North Dakota men’s and women’s track teams will resume action Jan. 17-18 at the National Pole Vault Summit at the University of Minnesota’s Northwest Open.