Track enjoys big performance

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Justin Chapman | Echo

Last weekend, Taylor’s men’s and women’s track teams kicked into gear, returning to action after not having a meet since April 8. The Indiana Little State Championships took place on April 21 and 22 in Upland, Indiana.

The Trojans competed against 14 other schools. After the first day, the men’s team claimed second place in the standings, and the women’s team placed fifth. Both Taylor teams placed fourth as the meet came to a close on Saturday.

Sophomore Ben Byrd placed second in the 1500-meter race with a time of 3:58.09, earning Taylor eight points.

Sophomore Brianna Jordahl recently broke a Taylor record in the hammer throw at the George Glass Invite, throwing for a distance of 47.39 meters. This weekend, she executed again and threw 45.45 meters.

While Jordahl had a strong performance this past weekend, she still wants to find ways to get better.

“I need to focus more in the future on just getting in the right mind and not getting in my head,” Jordahl said.

Jordahl knows she can continue to make great throws in the future. However, she wants to stop thinking about her actions so much and allow her body to move the way she’s been practicing.

With May approaching and the season winding down, the Trojans only have one more meet: the Hillsdale Invite. This meet started yesterday and continues through Saturday. The Trojans return to Upland to compete in the Crossroads League Championship.

Head coach David Neville said both teams are balanced and utilize both their younger and older athletes.

“We’re receiving more of our points right now from the freshman and sophomore classes,” Neville said. “But we have some great leadership that is coming from those who are older: our upperclassmen. We’ve had them step up in our leadership areas.”

On the men’s sprint side, freshman Caleb Anthony won the 400-meter hurdles.

According to Neville, sophomore Plenseh-Tay Sakeuh has excelled in the women’s 100-meter hurdles and the long jump. She is currently number one in the Crossroads League conference in both events.

Neville is excited for the Crossroads League Championships next weekend. He is optimistic the team can get healthy again and perform at full speed.

Byrd knows he has improved his running all season and hopes that will show at the league championships.

“Running is something that takes longer than a week or so to improve at,” Byrd said. “This season, the whole team has been very good about consistently pushing ourselves at practice and getting a little bit better everyday, and I think that will payoff in the next few weeks.”

The Crossroads League Championships begin next Friday at 3 p.m. and continues Saturday at 11 a.m.

“Photograph by Sean Quillen”