DinMen in a National Championship
Furman runners represent at NCAAs.
The Paladins Men’s and Women’s Cross-Country teams headed to Stillwater, OK to compete in the National Championships on Monday.
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Paladin runners Aaron Wier and Cameron Ponder competed at the NCAA Indoor Track & Field Championships this past weekend, Mar. 13 and 14. Wier competed in the Men’s Mile Preliminaries on Friday. Unfortunately, he was unable to qualify for the Finals the day after. Needing to place in the top four of his heat to guarantee his spot in the main event and needing to be in the top six to have a chance of advancing (depending on his final time), Wier finished 7th in heat two, and 15th overall with a time of 4:09.8. For a moment, it seemed as if Wier might qualify for the final, crossing the line in 3rd at the end of the eight-lap heat. However, he was back in 6th at the end of lap 6 and dropped all the way to last place at the bell before gaining a spot at the finish. For his performance, Wier was named a second-team All-American.
Ponder competed in the Men’s 3K Final on Saturday. Being completely fresh due to a lack of preliminaries, he started the final strong, being in 4th place at the end of lap 1 of the 15-lap race. He dropped back to 10th at the end of lap 2, before regaining a spot at the end of lap 3. He stayed in 9th place until the end of lap twelve, when he began a push for the title. He got as high as 6th with three laps to go, but dropped to 8th taking the bell, finishing in that position. For his efforts, Ponder was named an All-American.
The Paladins finished tied for 59th in the Men’s team standings, with Oregon winning the overall title. Ponder will have little time to rest on his laurels, however, as the Paladins Men’s and Women’s Cross-Country teams headed to Stillwater, OK to compete in the National Championships on Monday. Alongside Ponder, the men’s contingent in Oklahoma will consist of freshman Dylan Schubert, sophomores Ares Reading and Adam Beucler, junior Noah Dolhare, and seniors Daniel Bernal and Mason Coppi. The women’s contingent will consist of sophomore Nicole Matysik and freshmen Megan Marvin, Emily Little, Beth Donnelly, Bethany Graham, Jonna Strange, and Madelynne Cadeau.