Kierstin Stolley - Southwestern College Sports Information
WINFIELD, Kan. – The Southwestern College track and field team broke four meet records at the Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference Championships on Thursday and Friday in McPherson, Kan. The team broke records in the 400 Meter Dash, 400 Meter Hurdles, 800 Meter Run, and the 4x400 Meter Relay.
Junior Taylor Needham was involved in three of the four meet records. She set the records for the 400 Meter Dash, the 400 Meter Hurdles, and was the anchor in the 4x400 Meter Relay. Needham broke a 32 year-old meet record in the 400 Meter Dash, running the race in 55.99. Needham now holds the meet record and the school record in the event. The Cheney, Kan. native took first place in the Championships and qualified for the NAIA Outdoor Nationals in the 'A' division. Needham also broke the meet record in the 400 Meter Hurdles. She ran the race in 1:01.33, placing first in the event.
Kari Blattner broke an eight year-old meet record in the 800 Meter Run. Blattner, a sophomore, finished first in the event with a time of 2:15.47 and qualified for the NAIA Outdoor Nationals under the 'B' standard. She was also involved in the 4x400 Meter Relay, running the opening leg for team.
The women's 4x400 Meter Relay team broke a nine-year old record and finished first at the meet. The team ran the race in 3:58.37. Kari Blattner opened up the race for Southwestern, running the first leg in 58.75. Taya Buchanan took the second leg with a time of 1:02.11. Buchanan passed the baton to Justine Vogele who ran the third leg in 1:01.75, a personal-best. Taylor Needham anchored for the team, running the final leg in 55.76. Southwestern has won the 4x400 Meter Relay 22 of the past 25 years.
Justine Vogele finished first in the 3,000 Meter Steeplechase. While it wasn't a meet record, it was a career-best for Vogele. She was one second shy of the NAIA Outdoor Nationals 'B' qualifying mark, running the race in 11:28.21.
Nine Southwestern student-athletes earned All-KCAC recognition at the meet. The women's selections included Kari Blattner, Taya Buchanan, Bailey Collier, Megan Milch, Taylor Needham, and Justine Vogele. The men's selections included Coby Barham, Jersey Boydstun, and Seth Topham.